Max Verstappen beats rain and Leclerc to take F1 Imola GP sprint race pole

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  • World champion will lead Saturday’s 21-lap dash to decide P1
  • Lewis Hamilton 13th and criticises mishandling Mercedes

The marshals of Imola most deservedly earned a warming glass of vino rosso as darkness fell after qualifying for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, such was the frequency of the demands on them to wave red flags during a torturously slow, rain-afflicted session. By its close Red Bull’s Max Verstappen had earned “pole position” but such is the equally painful structuring of this format, while his pole counts statistically in the record books it is only for Saturday’s sprint race which will decide the literal pole for Sunday’s GP.

Verstappen beat Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc into second and McLaren’s Lando Norris into third. But for Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes the rain, the flags, the wretched format paled into insignificance next to the excruciating discomfort of his team’s performance at Imola as they fell to their worst showing in almost a decade.

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Written by Giles Richards at Imola
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2022/apr/22/max-verstappen-beats-rain-and-leclerc-to-take-f1-imola-gp-sprint-race-pole under the title “Max Verstappen beats rain and Leclerc to take F1 Imola GP sprint race pole”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.