Max takes pole position for sprint race Austin: 'Competitive'
Published on 21 October 2023 by Kees-Jan Koster
Oracle Red Bull Racing driver Max Verstappen won in an exciting shootout pole position for the sprint race in the United States. In Austin, the three-time Formula 1 world champion was narrowly ahead of the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc and the Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton.
“We were competitive in the sprint shootout”, Max starts. “My last lap was not particularly great, but still on pole, so the car was working quite well. I think it will be an exciting sprint race, with a lot of different cars close together.” Looking ahead to the sprint race, Max says: “Normally in the race we are quite okay, but this track is quite demanding. The wear on the tyres is high, because of all the high-speed corners and because of traction out of the low-speed corners. It will be tough.”
In the first part of the sprint shootout all drivers must be on medium compound Pirelli tyres. Max sets in his first run the fastest time (1:35.997) and is three tenths faster than Leclerc and Corlos Sainz. The Monegasque gets within two thousandths of a second to the Dutchman in his second flying lap. Alex Albon is surprisingly in third position. The two Haas drivers Nico Hülkenberg and Kevin Magnussen are the first to drop out, along with Valtteri Bottas, Yuki Tsunoda and Logan Sargeant.
Medium tyres are again used in the second part of the shootout. Max sets a 1:35.181 and is again followed by both Ferraris, with Leclerc in front of Sainz. Max makes a spectacular 360-degree spin in turn 9 during his second flying lap, buth without real consequences. Daniel Ricciardo, Fernando Alonso, Esteban Ocon, Lance Stroll and Zhou Guanyu are the five drivers who are not fast enough to go through to the next part.
Finally, the soft rubber can be used by the remaining ten drivers, in the third and final part of the sprint shootout. All of them go for one run, and Max is the first to set a time: 1:34.538. Leclerc gets within 55 thousandths of a second to Verstappen and Hamilton is 69 thousandths behind. Max wins pole position for the sprint race. The McLarens of Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri complete the top five on the grid.
Especially for the weekend in Austin, Red Bull Racing have added a unique colour scheme based on the American flag to the RB19. Enthusiasts of scale model cars can order this unique RB19 at www.verstappen.com.
|1||Max Verstappen||VER||Red Bull Racing Honda RBPT||1:35.997||1:35.181||1:34.538|
|4||Lando Norris||NOR||McLaren Mercedes||1:36.499||1:35.594||1:34.639|
|5||Oscar Piastri||PIA||McLaren Mercedes||1:36.703||1:35.753||1:34.894|
|7||Sergio Perez||PER||Red Bull Racing Honda RBPT||1:36.347||1:35.718||1:35.041|
|9||Alexander Albon||ALB||Williams Mercedes||1:36.230||1:35.947||1:35.366|
|10||Pierre Gasly||GAS||Alpine Renault||1:36.595||1:35.785||1:35.897|
|11||Daniel Ricciardo||RIC||AlphaTauri Honda RBPT||1:36.737||1:35.978|
|12||Fernando Alonso||ALO||Aston Martin Mercedes||1:36.365||1:36.087|
|13||Esteban Ocon||OCO||Alpine Renault||1:36.372||1:36.137|
|14||Lance Stroll||STR||Aston Martin Mercedes||1:36.575||1:36.181|
|15||Zhou Guanyu||ZHO||Alfa Romeo Ferrari||1:36.554||1:36.182|
|16||Nico Hulkenberg||HUL||Haas Ferrari||1:36.749|
|17||Kevin Magnussen||MAG||Haas Ferrari||1:36.922|
|18||Valtteri Bottas||BOT||Alfa Romeo Ferrari||1:36.922|
|19||Yuki Tsunoda||TSU||AlphaTauri Honda RBPT||1:36.945|
|20||Logan Sargeant||SAR||Williams Mercedes||1:37.186|