Winners and Losers from Miami GP qualifying

Finley Crebolder
Charles Leclerc's Ferrari ahead of Mick Schumacher's Haas. Miami May 2022.

Charles Leclerc's Ferrari ahead of Mick Schumacher's Haas. Miami May 2022.

For a few teams and drivers, qualifying for the maiden Miami Grand Prix was an American dream. For others, it was a nightmare.

Here is who will have finished their Saturday smiling and who will have been seething…



After a disastrous race at Imola, Ferrari crossed the pond in serious need of a strong weekend – and they could not have got off to a better start.

Charles Leclerc was in top form, topping every single qualifying session, while there was no bad luck or mistakes on the other side of the garage as Carlos Sainz completed a front-row lockout for the Italian team.

They would have liked at least one Red Bull to start further back than the second row and both will undoubtedly be big threats to Leclerc and Sainz in the race, but that will not have dampened their spirits too much.

The Scuderia have given themselves the best possible chance of success with a flawless Saturday showing.

Charles Leclerc in practice. Miami May 2022.
Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc passes the fence during practice. Miami May 2022.

Valtteri Bottas

Early in qualifying, it looked like it would be a bad day for Bottas who, after crashing in FP1 and not running in FP2, only just made it out of Q1.

The Finn found his feet after that though, putting in an excellent lap in Q2 to go P6 and make it into the top-10 shootout with ease.

He then went one better in the final session, taking P5 and the title of ‘best of the rest’ ahead of his former team-mate Lewis Hamilton.

His time alongside the seven-time former World Champion made him seem fairly average when it came to outright pace, but he is proving that is not the case by any means.


AlphaTauri have made a somewhat unspectacular start to the 2022 campaign, scoring just 16 points, but judging by qualifying that could be about to change in Miami.

Before heading to the Magic City, they looked to be towards the bottom of the midfield in the pecking order this year when it came to outright pace. But they were at the top of that pack on Saturday, being the only team other than Ferrari and Red Bull to get both drivers into Q3.

What’s more, the team just ahead of them in the standings, Alpine, failed to get either of their drivers into the top 10 and have one starting at the very back.

With just six points between the two, Pierre Gasly and co will fancy their chances of overtaking the French outfit in the championship.

Lance Stroll

Stroll needed a strong Saturday as much as anyone after being outperformed by his team-mate Sebastian Vettel throughout the last round – and he got it.

The Canadian was quite a bit faster than the German throughout qualifying and was one of the most impressive performers on the grid, comfortably making it into Q3.

In that final session, he was not able to challenge anyone ahead of him, but he and Aston Martin will be very happy with his efforts nonetheless.


George Russell

Russell had been immensely impressive in the first four rounds of his first season as a Mercedes driver, but could not maintain that form in Miami qualy.

After looking so good on Friday, finishing FP1 and FP2 in P2 and P1 respectively, he was far less comfortable with his car in qualifying, failing to make it into Q3 while his team-mate Lewis Hamilton did so comfortably and finished ahead of four drivers in it.

As a result, the young Briton will start the race in P12 and will have a huge amount of work to do if he wants to continue his streak of finishing every race this year inside the top five.

George Russell during practice. Miami GP May 2022.
Mercedes driver George Russell puts laps in during practice. Miami May 2022.


While their pace has generally looked good, Alpine’s results have been poor so far in 2022 and that was the case yet again in the fifth qualifying session of the campaign.

Their day started in the worst possible manner with Esteban Ocon crashing in FP3, ruling him out of qualifying and guaranteeing he would start the race from the back of the grid.

Still, with Fernando Alonso finishing in the top five in both FP2 and FP3, the team would have been optimistic they could still get one car into Q3. However, the Spaniard ended up missing out by less than half a tenth.

The French outfit seem to have built their best car in years, but are not making the most of it and could drop into the bottom four in the standings now.

Daniel Ricciardo

Ricciardo headed to Miami having been outqualified by his team-mate in each of the first four rounds, and he could not turn the tables in round five.

It initially looked like the Australian would, as he went faster than Lando Norris in both runs in Q1, but things went wrong for him after that as a start-up issue just before his final Q2 laps stopped him from getting out at the optimal time. As a result, he could not make it into Q3, finishing his day down in P14 while Norris went on to claim P8.

The Honey Badger loves racing in America and has put in some excellent displays there in the past. He will have to do so again this time if he wants to add some much-needed points to his tally and avoid falling a long way behind his team-mate as he did last year.


Haas have had a miserable time of things on home turf since joining the grid in 2016 but given their strong start to the season, they would have felt good about their chances of changing that on their first trip to Miami. Now, that will not be the case.

They looked good in practice, finishing in the top 10 in each session, but could not maintain that form in qualifying with Kevin Magnussen knocked out in Q1 and Mick Schumacher in Q2. The pair will start in P16 and P15 respectively.

With the team looking for new sponsors and this being perhaps the biggest F1 event in America yet, it was a golden opportunity for them to boost their reputation there – but it does not look like they will take it.


Red Bull and Ferrari continue the battle in Miami

Ferrari and Red Bull will be going to battle once again this weekend in Miami.