Max Verstappen took pole in qualifying in Abu Dhabi, with Sergio Perez second – a Red Bull front row lockout, and the Dutchman claiming things couldn’t have been better.
The double Formula 1 Champion took pole and as he did so towed his teammate Sergio Perez into second ahead of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.
As Perez is fighting Leclerc for second on the Drivers’ Championship, the latter finishing only 0.040s behind the Mexican, Verstappen’s help came just in time.
The Red Bull ace was content of the outcome of qualifying, he said: “It couldn’t have been better today, the tow worked out well as we managed to lock out the front row.
“We went out there and did our thing,” he went on. “As a Team we had an almost perfect qualifying and we are very excited for tomorrow. The most important thing is that Checo stays ahead of Charles so we’ll do what we can to make that happen.
“I do think that our car is quick, there’s a massive question mark around the other teams though and how much long run performance they will have gained overnight.
“We made a few mistakes in Brazil I guess but we learn from that and we are back where we should be,” Verstappen concluded.
Red Bull couldn’t have asked for a better Saturday
Christian Horner hailed his team’s qualifying; he said: “It was a great qualifying from the Team, our first front row lockout of the year and first since 2018.
“We are tremendously happy with the performance as it gives us an opportunity to end our most successful season in the best possible way,” he added.
“Max secured the 20th pole position of his career with a stellar last lap. On top of that, he gave Checo the tow in the second sector to help him secure the second grid slot – locking out the front row for the Team. It was.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better Saturday, but there is still a lot to do. Now we must focus on converting this into the best possible result tomorrow, ensuring 2nd place in the Championship for Checo,” the Briton concluded.
📻 “How did we do?” Pretty good, Max 👊 #AbuDhabiGP 🇦🇪pic.twitter.com/KgSpWk8OaT
— Oracle Red Bull Racing (@redbullracing) November 19, 2022