Max Verstappen Secures 21st Pole Position in Formula 1, Ferrari and Aston Martin Show Strengths and Weaknesses on Sakhir Circuit
Red Bull has dominated the qualifying session for the 2023 Bahrain Grand Prix, with Max Verstappen securing his 21st pole position in Formula 1. The team has mimicked the tactics that propelled Ferrari to the forefront of the championship last year, with the RB19 showing superior downforce and acceleration in the low-speed corners of the Sakhir circuit. However, it is the Ferrari SF-23 that boasts a higher top speed, making up for lost ground on the backstraight on the approach to Turn 4.
Meanwhile, Fernando Alonso’s Aston Martin AMR23 proved to be the surprise package of the qualifying session, setting the pace in FP2 and FP3 before slipping to fifth in the final shootout. The two-time champion’s impressive braking skills and access to greater mechanical grip helped him to outperform both Verstappen and Charles Leclerc in some areas of the circuit. However, the AMR23 is the slowest of the three cars on the straights, leaving Alonso trailing behind his rivals in the dash to the timing line.
The qualifying session has given us a glimpse into the strengths and weaknesses of the top teams in this year’s championship, and sets the stage for an exciting race on Sunday.