The 2022 F1 Canadian GP qualifying featured Max Verstappen displaying utter dominance over the rest of the field as he secured his second pole position of the season. In a qualifying session conducted in damp conditions, two-time world champion Fernando Alonso turned back the clock as he secured a shock front row starting position for Alpine.
The passing thunderstorm that had affected FP3 earlier did not subside as the gloomy conditions and light rain meant that all the teams would start the qualifying session on full wet tires. In a session where there were multiple off-the-track moments for cars, it was only Sergio Perez who faced elimination. The Mexican driver ended up in the barriers in Q2 and will start the race in 13th position. His Red Bull teammate however kept his nose clean as Verstappen didn’t put a foot wrong and clinched a comfortable pole in the end as his competition subsided one by one.
Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz was in P3 after messing up the exit out of the last corner on his last flying lap. Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton took P4 in his Mercedes ahead of the Haas duo of Kevin Magnussen and Mick Schumacher. Esteban Ocon in the second Alpine was P7 with George Russell in P8 after the Mercedes driver’s gamble on slicks backfired. Daniel Ricciardo was P9 after muscling the McLaren into Q3 while Guanyu Zhou was P10 after securing his first-ever Q3 start.
So, in case you missed qualifying for the 2022 F1 Canadian GP, here’s what happened!
#1 Max Verstappen secures pole position as competition falls by the wayside
Once Charles Leclerc was declared to start the 2022 F1 Canadian GP at the back of the grid, it appeared that everything was in place for Max Verstappen to clinch pole position. The Monegasque is the only driver that has shown the ability to challenge Verstappen over a single lap as neither Sergio Perez nor Carlos Sainz have come close to the reigning champion this weekend.
Even then, the rain did complicate things, but Verstappen’s all-around ability shone through as he secured a rather comfortable pole for Sunday’s race while Sainz messed up his final lap yet again.
#2 Fernando Alonso turns back the clock with a front-row start at 2022 F1 Canadian GP
Fernando Alonso has shown tremendous ability to pull off some great laps this season. This weekend, however, he has been driving at a very high level – a level at which he has taken the Alpine to places not many expected it to reach.
That P2 starting position is entirely on merit for the Spaniard. Sometimes, it makes you wonder what he would have had, had he not been this volatile and ended up with a good car in his career.
#3 George Russell’s gamble on slicks backfires
George Russell was one of the most impressive drivers on the grid this weekend. Like the last few races, the young Briton had Lewis Hamilton sorted out and was putting together lap times that his teammate could not respond to. In the dying stages of the 2022 F1 Canadian GP qualifying, Russell opted to gamble on slick tires on a drying track.
Had that succeeded, Russell would have secured the first pole position of his career. As it turns out, however, the move backfired and the Mercedes driver will start the race in P8 while his veteran teammate starts in P4.
#4 Sergio Perez and Lando Norris suffer Q2 eliminations while Alex Albon impresses
As mentioned earlier, Sergio Perez was eliminated in Q2 as he locked his wheels and went straight into the barriers at Turn 3. The Red Bull driver was one of the few that were on intermediate tires at that point but it worked against him as he could not generate enough temperature in the tires and ended up crashing into the wall.
Lando Norris was far more unfortunate as the McLaren driver faced power unit problems that left him unable to put a competitive lap time on the board. As a result, both the drivers were casualties in the 2022 F1 Canadian GP Q2 and will start the race in P13 and P14.
Meanwhile, Williams’ Alex Albon outperformed his car and teammate once again to gain entry into Q2 and secure a P12 starting position for Sunday’s race.
#5 The Aston Martins fall out of the working range and suffer Q1 elimination
Looking at the lofty heights that Fernando Alonso reached in the 2022 F1 Canadian GP qualifying, Sebastian Vettel might just have been thinking “it could have been me”. The German driver was in dominant form in both wet and dry conditions and looked set for a strong result.
All those hopes went down the drain as both Aston Martin cars suffered from an inability to generate heat into the tires all of a sudden. As a result, both Vettel and Lance Stroll were out in the Q1 session for the 2022 F1 Canadian GP. This was a classic case of “what could have been” as both Aston Martins would be utterly disappointed.