Round 2 of Formula 1 in 2022 and it is the Saudi Arabian GP at the Jeddah Corniche circuit. Both Ferrari and Red Bull have continued their strong campaign from the previous race in Bahrain. The street circuit once again proved to be tricky for the drivers for the entire weekend. With multiple drivers crashing, Red Bull stood on top in the last 2 days.
2022 Saudi Arabian GP Qualifying results
Latifi in the Williams crashed out in Q1 and after a horrifying crash, Mick Schumacker briefly stopped Q2. The quick response from the medical team made sure the German was out of harm’s way and was airlifted for further examinations.
It was Sergio Perez in the Red Bull who grabbed his first pole position in Formula 1. This comes after 11 years in his F1 career and 215 races which is now a record. Leclerc and Sainz locked 2nd and 3rd positions and Max had to settle for 4th. But the key talking point in Qualifying was Lewis Hamilton’s elimination in Q1 after 5 years. Mercedes’s different approach for both drivers didn’t pan out for the 7 times world champion. Hamilton only managed 16th whereas the newcomer Russell was 6th fastest on the grid.
|1.||Sergio Perez||Red Bull||1:28.200|
|4.||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||1:28.461|
|8.||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo||1:29.183|
|9.||Pierre Gasly||Alpha Tauri||1:29.254|
|13.||Zhou Guanyu||Alfa Romeo||1:29.819|
|15.||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin||1:31.009|
|18.||Nico Hulkenberg||Aston Martin||1:30.543|
|20.||Yuki Tsunoda||Alpha Tauri||DNS|
Perez and Leclerc with a decent start maintained their positions but Sainz was forced to the outside which opened the gates for Max who gained a position in the first turn. Perez still having the advantage was boxed on lap 15, but Leclerc and the other top drivers stayed out. Another crash from the Williams driver Latifi brought in the safety car which played right into the hands of the Ferrari. Leclerc, Max and Sainz had a cheap pitstop that pushed Perez down to 3rd under the safety car and lost another position at the restart. With no fault of his own, Sergio Perez, the pole-sitter lost the lead of the race.
2022 Saudi Arabian GP Race Results
|1.||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||1:24:19.293||25|
|2.||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari||+0.549 s||19 (+1 for fastest lap)|
|3.||Carlos Sainz||Ferrari||+8.097 s||15|
|4.||Sergio Perez||Red Bull||+10.800 s||12|
|5.||George Russell||Mercedes||+32.732 s||10|
|6.||Esteban Ocon||Alpine||+56.017 s||8|
|7.||Lando Norris||Mclaren||+56.124 s||6|
|8.||Pierre Gasly||Alpha Tauri||+62.946 s||4|
|9.||Kevin Magnussen||Haas||+64.308 s||2|
|10.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||+73.948 s||1|
|11.||Zhou Guanyu||Alfa Romeo||+82.215 s||0|
|12.||Nico Hulkenberg||Aston Martin||+91.742 s||0|
|13.||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin||+1 lap||0|
|15.||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo||DNF||0|
|19.||Yuki Tsunoda||Alpha Tauri||DNF||0|
The new regulation is definitely encouraging the drivers to push each other. We have already seen many close battles in just two races of the season and there’s more to come. The next stop is Australia for the Melbourne GP. Stay tuned for further updates.