Max Verstappen has stamped his authority on his home race qualifying on pole for the Dutch Grand Prix.
In doing so, the Red Bull driver became the first Dutchman to qualify fastest for his home race, after setting a time of 1m08.885s.
Championship rival Lewis Hamilton will start alongside on the front row after a last-ditch effort from the Mercedes driver saw him fall just 0.038s short of Verstappen’s time.
Valtteri Bottas had looked the stronger of Mercedes drivers in qualifying until Hamilton’s final flying lap which relegated the Finn to third on the grid.
AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly will round out the second row of the grid after a strong showing throughout qualifying.
Ferrari locked out the third row of the grid with Charles Leclerc narrowly edging out Carlos Sainz for fifth.
The effort from the iconic Italian team was even more impressive after Sainz crashed heavily in FP3, resulting in a significant rebuild completed just in time for the Spaniard to take the track for qualifying.
Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi impressed with the seventh-fastest time ahead of the two Alpines of Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso.
Daniel Ricciardo rounded out the top ten for McLaren. The first time the Australian had consistently outpaced his teammate since joining the team.
Q2 was headlined by the crashes of both Williams’, which saw the two red flag interruptions for the session.
George Russell was first to find the wall, pushing at the second to last corner, the Brit spun and made slight contact with the barrier.
Russell was able to drive back to the pits where the team checked over the car before allowing him to resume the session. But officials still stopped the session to clean the gravel off the circuit.
His teammate, Nicholas Latifi was not so lucky. When the session resumed, the Canadian was amongst the first to attempt to improve his time in Q2 before dropping a wheel off on the entry to Turn 8.
The Williams driver spun at high speed colliding heavily with the wall on the outside of the corner. Latifi walked away from the incident but it brought the session to an early end.
Unable to improve lap times at the end of the Q2 session Russell ended the session 11th ahead of Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll.
McLaren’s Lando Norris will start from 13th after his final two qualifying attempts had to be aborted due to red flags.
Latifi ended up 14th ahead of Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri).
Surprisingly, neither Sergio Perez (Red Bull) or Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin) progressed out of Q1 and they will start 16th and 17th respectively.
Vettel, in particular, was caught out on his flying lap by the two Haas drivers squabbling over track position.
Robert Kubica, who is subbing for Kimi Raikkonen at Alfa Romeo, after a last-minute call-up ended the session 18th, while Haas rounded out the rear of the grid with Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin.
The Dutch Grand Prix is scheduled to get underway at 11pm AEST on Sunday.
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