2024 Chinese GP Qualifying: Max On Pole 100 For Red Bull

Max Verstappen continued his dominance by securing his sixth consecutive pole position following a Sprint race win; while Hamilton qualified 18th after his Sprint podium finish.


By Ben Bush
Published on April 20, 2024

Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing 2024 Chinese Grand Prix Qualifying
Max Verstappen for Red Bull Racing on pole for the 2024 Chinese Grand Prix

Max Verstappen maintained his excellent form by securing a commanding pole position at the 2024 Chinese Grand Prix, marking Red Bull’s 100th pole in their history.

Verstappen led each session at the Shanghai International Circuit and further improved his time in Q3 to a standout 1m 33.660s. The fight for the second spot was intense, but his teammate Sergio Perez ultimately claimed it.

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Fernando Alonso drove his Aston Martin to third place, staying ahead of the McLaren pair of Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri, with Charles Leclerc finishing sixth.

Carlos Sainz recovered to seventh place after spinning into the barriers in Q2, which caused a session interruption due to a red flag. George Russell was the fastest Mercedes, securing eighth place. Nico Hulkenberg and Valtteri Bottas rounded out the top ten, placing ninth and tenth, respectively.

Lance Stroll missed out on the top ten, finishing eleventh, just behind Bottas who moved up late in the session. Daniel Ricciardo also failed to make the cut, ending up twelfth.

The Alpine duo of Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly, who both reached Q2 for the first time this season, finished thirteenth and fifteenth respectively. Alex Albon, in the Williams, was sandwiched between them in fourteenth.

The session brought a surprise as Lewis Hamilton was unexpectedly eliminated early, finishing eighteenth. Home favorite Zhou Guanyu also bowed out early, finishing sixteenth amid struggles for grip. Kevin Magnussen, Yuki Tsunoda, and Logan Sargeant were also among those eliminated early, finishing seventeenth, nineteenth, and twentieth respectively.

Chinese GP Qualifying Results

2024 Chinese Grand Prix, 20 April 2024

11Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing Honda RBPT1:34.7421:33.7941:33.66018
211Sergio PerezRed Bull Racing Honda RBPT1:35.4571:34.0261:33.98219
314Fernando AlonsoAston Martin Aramco Mercedes1:35.1161:34.6521:34.14815
44Lando NorrisMcLaren Mercedes1:34.8421:34.4601:34.16515
581Oscar PiastriMcLaren Mercedes1:35.0141:34.6591:34.27316
616Charles LeclercFerrari1:34.7971:34.3991:34.28920
755Carlos SainzFerrari1:34.9701:34.3681:34.29717
863George RussellMercedes1:35.0841:34.6091:34.43320
927Nico HulkenbergHaas Ferrari1:35.0681:34.6671:34.60421
1077Valtteri BottasKick Sauber Ferrari1:35.1691:34.7691:34.66515
1118Lance StrollAston Martin Aramco Mercedes1:35.3341:34.83812
123Daniel RicciardoRB Honda RBPT1:35.4431:34.93412
1331Esteban OconAlpine Renault1:35.3561:35.22315
1423Alexander AlbonWilliams Mercedes1:35.3841:35.24114
1510Pierre GaslyAlpine Renault1:35.2871:35.46315
1624Zhou GuanyuKick Sauber Ferrari1:35.5058
1720Kevin MagnussenHaas Ferrari1:35.5166
1844Lewis HamiltonMercedes1:35.5736
1922Yuki TsunodaRB Honda RBPT1:35.7469
202Logan SargeantWilliams Mercedes1:36.3587

Hamilton Struggled in His Worst Qualifying in Two Years

Lewis Hamilton, a six-time winner at the Shanghai International Circuit, faced a bleak outlook for a strong finish in the race’s return—the first since the Covid-19 pandemic. Despite his historical success in China, Hamilton’s chances of another win were distant.

In Friday’s wet qualifying session for the Sprint, Hamilton managed an unexpected second-place finish, showcasing his skill as one of the sport’s acclaimed ‘rain masters’ and compensating for his car’s inconsistent performance.

He maintained a lead for the first eight laps of the 19-lap Sprint race, starting ahead of pole-sitter Norris, only to be passed by Verstappen in the faster Red Bull.

However, the transition to an all-dry qualifying session on Saturday marked a downturn for Hamilton. Finding himself in the Q1 elimination zone after an initially sluggish lap, he seemed poised to advance to Q2 in his final attempt. Yet, a lock-up under braking led him wide at the final hairpin, causing him to miss progressing by just 0.116 seconds. This marked Hamilton’s first Q1 exit since the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

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About The Author

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Ben Bush

Ben is our chief editor specialising in F1 from the 1990s to the modern era. Ben has been following Formula 1 since 1986 and is an avid researcher who loves understanding the technology that makes it one of the most exciting motorsport on the planet. He listens to podcasts about F1 on a daily basis, and enjoys reading books from the inspirational Adrian Newey to former F1 drivers.

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