As Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz Jr. set out to qualify for the Formula 1 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, they had a feeling that they would be able to make some unpredictable moves and produce some big moments.
The duo’s expectations were surpassed in Saturday’s qualifying session, as Sainz put his Ferrari SF1000 on the third row of the grid in a session that saw the Italian team’s fortunes shift unpredictably.
Though Sainz put in a strong performance, Leclerc was not able to follow suit, failing to break into the top ten. The Monegasque driver endured a trying session, with his lap times well off the pace set by the front runners.
The result was a qualifying session for Ferrari that was characterized by inconsistency. The two drivers were unable to make the most of their SF1000s, with Leclerc’s session ending prematurely due to a technical issue.
Though Sainz was able to keep his car on the track for the duration of the session, he was still unable to match the pace of the frontrunners, finishing with a time of 1:34.967, nearly one second behind pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton.
Despite the lack of a top ten finish for Leclerc, Sainz’s performance was encouraging for the team, as they head into Sunday’s race with the Spaniard in a position to make some big moves.
The Saudi Arabian Grand Prix has the potential to be an important race for Ferrari, and Sainz’s qualifying performance has given them hope that they may be able to produce some unexpected results.