F1 qualifying LIVE: Result and grid positions from rainy Imola as Max Verstappen takes pole for sprint race and Lewis Hamilton struggles

Sainz Jnr handed new Ferrari contract as F1 heads to Imola:

Max Verstappen will start Saturday’s sprint race at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix on pole position after both Mercedes cars failed to make it through to Q3 for the first time in almost 10 years at Imola on Friday evening.

After Carlos Sainz’s crash in Q2 triggered a red flag, the rain began to pour and brought wet conditions for the remainder of the session, leaving both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell eliminated as they opted to not risk a further lap in the rain.

It marked the first time since the Japanese Grand Prix in 2012 that Mercedes failed to have a car finish in the top 10 of qualifying as their early season struggles continued, with Toto Wolff saying his purs issues with ‘porpoising’ were their worst yet this year .

At the other end of the field, Verstappen will start ahead of Charles Leclerc after he held on to provisional pole in a rain-soaked and red flag-hit qualifying session. Verstappen clocked a faster time than Leclerc just as Valtteri Bottas pulled up off the track to trigger the fifth red flag of the session, while Lando Norris took a third surprise.

Follow all the reaction from qualifying at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix below:

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Reaction from Max Verstappen:

Early on in qualifying it looked as though Ferrari could clinch a potential one-two but Max Verstappen held in their and managed to pip Charles Leclerc to pole.

“It was tricky out there with the dry / rain. It was very slippery. It was hectic, a long qualifying but of course in the end happy to be here. It’s an amazing track and it really punishes you if you make a mistake. ” said Verstappen at the end of Q3:

“I am really pleased with pole. It will be different weather at the weekend but a good start. Our first three races in general did not go to plan but we will try to have a good weekend here. ”

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 18:00:

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‘How far off are we? This is crazy ‘: Lewis Hamilton reveals qualifying frustration over team radio:

Lewis Hamilton’s struggles at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix continued as both Mercedes cars failed to advance to the final session of qualifying for the first time in almost 10 years at Imola.

Hamilton only managed to scraped to the second session of qualifying, coming in 15th by just 0.004s, and that is where his day ended. The seven-time world champion finished 13th and Mercedes’ problems were compounded as George Russell finished 11th, also failing to make it through to the top-10 shootout.

After Carlos Sainz crashed into the wall to trigger a red flag, both Hamilton and Russell decided not to go back out to the track during Q2 on wet tires. Hamilton had let his frustrations known over the team radio in Q1, saying: “How far off are we, man? This is crazy. ”

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:55:

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Max Verstappen beats Charles Leclerc to pole for Imola sprint race as both Mercedes cars fail to make Q3

Max Verstappen will start Saturday’s sprint race at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix on pole position after both Mercedes cars failed to make it through to Q3 for the first time in almost 10 years at Imola on Friday evening.

After Carlos Sainz’s crash in Q2 triggered a red flag, the rain began to pour and brought wet conditions for the remainder of the session, leaving both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell eliminated as they opted to not risk a further lap in the rain.

It marked the first time since the Japanese Grand Prix in 2012 that Mercedes failed to have a car finish in the top 10 of qualifying as their early season struggles continued, with Toto Wolff saying his purs issues with ‘porpoising’ were their worst yet this year .

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:49:

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Verstappen takes pole at Imola:

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:46:

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Verstappen takes pole at Imola:

Two quickfire red flags at the end of Q3 sees no changes to the standings. This is how the grid will look for the Sprint race tomorrow:

That pole is also added to Max Verstappen’s stats although he’ll need to win the Sprint to secure pole for the Grand Prix on Sunday.

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:43:

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Red flag! 🛑:

Lando Norris goes off and ends up in the barrier causing another red flag and that’s going to be the end of qualifying!

Max Verstappen takes pole ahead of Charles Leclerc!

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:41:

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Emilia Romagna qualifying:

Max Verstappen is the first car to the end of the pit lane but he’s got a couple of minutes to wait before Q3 restarts. Right behind him is Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari.

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:37:

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Emilia Romagna qualifying:

Q3 to resume at 5:38 pm. There’s 2:58 left in qualifying, plenty of time for a couple more laps but the rain has started up again.

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:35:

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Emilia Romagna qualifying:

Q3 as it stands, could this be the grid line-up for the Sprint tomorrow?

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:31:

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Emilia Romagna qualifying:

There may be time enough for one – maybe two – more laps in Q3 after the red flag is lifted. Verstappen has provisional pole for the Sprint race and the weekend.

Can one of the other drivers set a flying lap in the closing stages of Q3 to challenge the Red Bull?

Michael Jones:22 April 2022 17:28:

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