Qualifying for Sunday’s 2023 Brazilian Grand Prix came to an end under red flag conditions as heavy rain battered the Interlagos circuit whilst Max Verstappen took pole position in São Paulo.
With the rain closing in, the final ten drivers who remained in the session ultimately only had one flying lap in Q3 to set their best times, during which Verstappen proved the best of the pack to claim yet another top spot.
Charles Leclerc rounded out the front row for Ferrari, whilst Aston Martin enjoyed one of their best results of the season in qualifying as Lance Stroll and Fernando Alonso finished P3 and P4 respectively.
There was disappointment for McLaren though, as Oscar Piastri slid off the track during his flying lap which ultimately in turn ruined Sergio Perez’s time. The Australian rookie’s teammate Lando Norris could also only manage P7 in the end despite showing great pace in the opening two sessions.
MORE: F1 Brazilian Grand Prix predictions, odds, betting tips, best bets for 2023 race in São Paulo
END OF Q3: Max Verstappen takes pole position for the 2023 Brazilian Grand Prix! The red flag is waved and with four minutes left in Q3, this qualifying session comes to an end and will not be resumed. Leclerc finishes P2 and it’s a great result for Aston Martin as Stroll and Alonso finished on the second row.
5 minutes left of Q3: After the opening flying laps in Q3, it’s provisional pole position for Verstappen as Piastri spins off the track which ruins Perez’s lap in the process. The sky is pitch black all of a sudden and that could be how we finish if the rain begins to fall heavily.
START OF Q3: For the final time today, the green light is on for Q3 as the rain begins to fall. Who’s your money on for pole position then?
END OF Q2: There’s not much movement on the final laps of the session as the track begins to cool due to the incoming weather. Norris finishes top ahead of Red Bull pair Verstappen and Perez. Both Haas and Alpine drivers are out at the other end with Albon finishing last for Williams.
Eliminated from Q2:
5 minutes left of Q2: A number of drivers improve on their second runs but Verstappen still leads for now. Sainz and Russell jump into the top three for now whilst Ocon is the driver at risk.
10 minutes left of Q2: Verstappen posts a 1:10.162 to lead the early exchanges of Q2 from McLaren pair Norris and Piastri who are looking really quick out there.
START OF Q2: We’re back underway in São Paulo as Verstappen leads us out.
Russell is currently under investigation by the stewards for blocking the pit exit.
END OF Q1: As the rain begins to fall lightly, Russell takes top spot in Q1. He’s followed by Verstappen, Leclerc, Hulkenberg and Piastri but it’s double disappointment for both AlphaTauri and Alfa Romeo. Sargeant is the other driver out.
Eliminated from Q1:
5 minutes left of Q1: Leclerc replaces Norris in top spot for now as Stroll makes it up into P3. Tusnoda, Bottas, Sargeant, Albon and Zhou Guanyu currently form the bottom five.
10 minutes left of Q1: After the early runs in Q1, it’s Norris who leads with Hamilton just behind. The British pair are then followed by Verstappen, Gasly and Ricciardo who round out the top five. Could the rain come soon? The clouds are rolling in.
START OF Q1: Away we finally go then as the battle for pole position begins around Interlagos in São Paulo. McLaren’s Oscar Piastri leads us out of the pits as the threat of rain looms large.
Start delayed: Due to debris on the track, the start of qualifying has been delayed by 15 minutes.
15 minutes to lights out: Just under 15 minutes to go until we get qualifying underway here in São Paulo.
Hopefully everyone can give each other plenty of space out on the track unlike Lando Norris and Nico Hulkenberg who collided in bizarre fashion during FP1 earlier!
30 minutes to lights out: Verstappen is the obvious bookmakers’ favourite to take top spot here in this session, but there’s plenty of other drivers who could challenge.
Given his recent performances that have improved drastically, plus Mercedes’ key upgrades since the US Grand Prix in Austin, Lewis Hamilton could push his rival all the way here. The Brit absolutely loves driving at this track too, a place where he’s had plenty of success before during his career.
1 hour until lights out: Hello and welcome to The Sporting News‘ live coverage of qualifying for the 2023 Brazilian Grand Prix!
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen enters as the obvious favourite to take pole position here in São Paulo but Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc has looked quick in qualifying of late and should challenge once again in Brazil.
Sunday’s 2023 Brazilian Grand Prix is scheduled to start at 2:00 p.m. local time. Lights out will take place just after 12:00 p.m. ET and 5:00 p.m GMT.
Below is the complete schedule for the weekend’s F1 events in Sao Paulo.
MORE: F1 Brazilian Grand Prix 2023: Time, schedule, TV channel, live stream for Formula 1 race week
In 2023, the Formula One Calendar will be made up on 23 races across four different continents.
The action began with the Bahrain Grand Prix on March 5 and will end on November 26 in Abu Dhabi.
Here’s the latest schedule (subject to change):
F1 fans in the USA can catch all the action in 2023 with all 23 races set to be shown live on ABC, ESPN, and ESPN2. For Spanish-language viewers, they can find live broadcasts on ESPN Deportes, though ESPNews and ESPNU will also show some practice and qualifying sessions live throughout the year.