Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc starts from pole position in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix this Sunday (2 p.m. in the FAZ live ticker for Formula 1 and on Sky). The Monegasse prevailed in the eventful qualifying in Baku ahead of Formula 1 record world champion Lewis Hamilton (England / Mercedes) and World Championship leader Max Verstappen (Netherlands / Red Bull). The four-time champion Sebastian Vettel (Heppenheim) will start the sixth race of the season from eleven on the grid in an Aston Martin.
“Actually it wasn’t a good lap,” said Leclerc, who benefited from accidents involving AlphaTauri driver Yuki Tsunoda (Japan) and his team-mate Carlos Sainz (Spain) shortly before the end of qualifying for a red flag and the demolition. For Leclerc it is the ninth pole of his Formula 1 career and the second of the season. He was unable to use the first in his home country of Monaco two weeks ago due to a defect.
Hamilton said, “This is a monumental result considering what big problems we’ve had here. Our race pace was better than that on one lap. I hope that it stays that way and that we can fight with the others. “Verstappen was annoyed:” We have a good car here and then this crap happens. I would have liked to have started from the beginning, but things like that happen in qualifying. “
Formula 1 newcomer Mick Schumacher finished 17th in the Haas, Michael Schumacher’s son has never been so good in qualifying. He left his Russian team-mate Nikita Masepin behind, and the 22-year-old also benefited from two failures: Vettel’s Canadian team-mate Lance Stroll crashed as did Italian Antonio Giovinazzi (Alfa Romeo) in Q1, both starting from the bottom of the field.
“We got everything out of the package, I made a mistake on my fast lap,” said Schumacher at Sky: “I think we have a deficit here on the long straight. But I won the internal battle, I’m definitely happy. “
At the last race in Monaco, Verstappen took over the championship lead with his victory, four points separate him from Hamilton. His racing team is also one point ahead of Mercedes in the team standings. The last time Red Bull had such a double lead was in 2013, when Vettel drove to his fourth and to this day last title with the racing team.