Lewis Hamilton will have plenty of work to do in order to get himself into a promising position to start this year’s Brazilian Grand Prix over the course of today’s sprint event in Sao Paulo. The 37-year-old will line up in eighth place after a topsy-turvy qualifying session on Friday in which Kevin Magnussen managed to secure a surprise pole thanks to a late downpour at the end of Q3.
The Haas driver was able to set the quickest lap on slicks at the start of Q3 before George Russell beached his Mercedes in the gravel to bring out the red flags. The heavens then opened as Russell’s stricken car was being cleared away to give Magnussen his first-ever pole and spark wild celebrations in the Haas garage.
It remains to be seen whether the Dane will still be ahead of the chasing pack at the end of today’s sprint, though, with the likes of Max Verstappen, George Russell, Lando Norris and Carlos Sainz set to pose a major threat to his hopes of taking the chequered flag. Magnussen was as shocked as anybody after clinching pole position on Friday but vowed to give everything as he looks to deliver a strong performance in the final sprint event of the 2022 campaign.
“What a phenomenal job the team did to put me out on the pit lane as the first car to give me the best piece of track,” said the Haas driver.
“It was starting to rain so that was the crucial part. The car was strong, we were in contention for Q3. It was a bit drizzly and not fully dry and our car was perfect for that. Today the big difference was getting me out in the pit lane as the first car, it is incredible.
“Thank you to Gene Haas and Guenther [Steiner] and the whole team for this opportunity. It has just been an amazing journey, it is incredible, thank you. Maximum attack, let’s go for something funny.”
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