2022 Japanese Grand Prix – FP3 & Qualifying
It was an eventful Saturday at the Suzuka International Racing Course, as the teams got their first glimpse at how the track behaved in dry weather conditions. Exciting changes in the driver markets preceded the day, as the moves of Pierre Gasly to Alpine and Nyck de Vries to AlphaTauri were announced. What happened during the final practice and qualifying sessions of the 2022 Japanese Grand Prix? Stay with us until the end to find out!
Free Practise 3
The early moments of the final practice session were a frenzy, as all the drivers wanted a taste of the dry tarmac of the Suzuka circuit. Once again, it was Max Verstappen who put in the session’s best lap, beating out the Ferrari duo of Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc. However, Sainz expressed his displeasure towards Leclerc about interrupting his lap at one point, sarcastically stating “Thank you, Charles”.
Fernando Alonso, a previous two-time winner here, also carried his momentum to settle at P4. The Mercedes and McLarens also looked fast around the 5 KM long course. With almost all teams showing pace around the circuit, today’s qualifying is set to be an exciting surprise for Japanese F1 fans.
- Max Verstappen 1:30.671
- Carlos Sainz 1:30.965
- Charles Leclerc 1:30.980
The Japanese Grand Prix is a beloved race weekend of F1 fans, and the qualifying session for its 2022 edition did not disappoint. Max Verstappen gave it his all and grabbed the pole position by the narrowest of margins, beating out Charles Leclerc by just 0.010 seconds. The Dutchman can clinch the World Championship this weekend by scoring the race win and the fastest lap. But he has a potential penalty coming his way due to a Q3 incident with Lando Norris.
Sebastian Vettel did a fantastic job to get his Aston Marting into the top 10. With that, the 4-time World Champion maintains his record of qualifying in the top 10 in every Japanese Grand Prix he has ever competed in during his F1 career. He unqualified the McLaren of Lando Norris to start the race at P9 in his last outing at Suzuka.
A brake issue caused Pierre Gasly to have an early exit from qualifying. However, his teammate, Japanese driver Yuki Tsunoda did well to qualify in 13th place in his home circuit.
- Max Verstappen 1:30.224
- Charles Leclerc 1:30.402
- Carlos Sainz 1:30.336
- After three long years, we finally get to see F1 cars race around Suzuka once again. Tomorrow’s race is set to be a championship decider, so don’t forget to join us for the race coverage. Until then, check out some of our previous F1 articles here.
Although the driver’s championship is secured, the battle for the constructor’s title is still ongoing. Join us next weekend as we get closer and closer to the end of the 2022 F1 season.
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