Ferrari mastered the tow at Circuit Paul Ricard as Charles Leclerc claimed pole position for the 2022 French Grand Prix.
With Carlos Sainz dropping to the back of the grid due to taking a new power unit, and thus out of the pole equation, his challenge in Q3 was to provide his team-mate Leclerc with the perfect tow.
The opening run proved successful, Leclerc securing provisional pole, while on the second attempt Ferrari’s masterclass of the tow intensified, Leclerc finding another three tenths of a second to see off the threat of Max Verstappen.
Here is our full report from qualifying for the 2022 French Grand Prix.
Leclerc set the Q1 pace on a 1:31.7, while down at the bottom of the Q1 timings a spin for Alex Albon and the resulting yellow flags provided an unwelcome late obstacle, but fortunately not a critical one for the other drivers.
Nicholas Latifi propped up the timings, while Mick Schumacher went from top 10 to eliminated after his final time was deleted for track limits. Zhou Guanyu, Lance Stroll and Pierre Gasly joined them in Q1 elimination.
Although he will start from the back due to an engine penalty, Sainz decided to use his Ferrari to obliterate the competition on the opening Q2 runs, clocking a 1:31.0.
Leclerc made it a comfortable Ferrari one-two but for Williams’ Albon, Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel, Valtteri Bottas in the Alfa Romeo, Alpine’s Esteban Ocon and Daniel Ricciardo in the McLaren, Q2 marked the end of their qualifying endeavours.
After the initial Q3 runs, Leclerc found himself on provisional pole, aided by the perfect assistance of a tow from his team-mate Sainz.
Verstappen was right in the mix though, a mere 0.008s separating the title protagonists.
Leclerc though found a further three tenths on his last attempt, Verstappen unable to respond. Leclerc then was on pole for the French Grand Prix.
1 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:30.872
2 Max Verstappen Red Bull 0.304s
3 Sergio Perez Red Bull 0.463s
4 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 0.893s
5 Lando Norris McLaren 1.160s
6 George Russell Mercedes 1.259s
7 Fernando Alonso Alpine 1.680s
8 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1.908s
9 Carlos Sainz Ferrari NO TIME
10 Kevin Magnussen Haas NO TIME
1 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1:31.081
2 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 0.135s
3 Max Verstappen Red Bull 0.909s
4 Sergio Perez Red Bull 1.039s
5 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1.193s
6 Fernando Alonso Alpine 1.550s
7 George Russell Mercedes 1.552s
8 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1.568s
9 Lando Norris McLaren 1.696s
10 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1.755s
11 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren 1.841s
12 Esteban Ocon Alpine 1.967s
13 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Racing 1.971s
14 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin 2.195s
15 Alex Albon Williams 2.226s
1 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:31.727
2 Max Verstappen Red Bull 0.164s
3 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 0.570s
4 Sergio Perez Red Bull 0.627s
5 Lando Norris McLaren 0.945s
6 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1.029s
7 Fernando Alonso Alpine 1.092s
8 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Racing 1.307s
9 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1.314s
10 George Russell Mercedes 1.382s
11 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin 1.558s
12 Esteban Ocon Alpine 1.619s
13 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1.667s
14 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren 1.677s
15 Alex Albon Williams 1.696s
16 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 1.712s
17 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 1.712s
18 Guanyu Zhou Alfa Romeo Racing 1.947s
19 Mick Schumacher Haas 1.974s
20 Nicholas Latifi Williams 2.067s