Piastri Turns Heads After Topping the Table in the Sprint Shootout in Qatar

October 7, 2023Ramon Jones
Formula 1

In surprising fashion Oscar Piastri stunned the grid by topping the table in the sprint shootout. The sprint shootout will set the grid for the sprint race set to take place later today. Piastri claimed pole by setting a 1m24.454 lap beating out his teammate Lando Norris in second by 0.08s. Championship leader Max Verstappen finished in third. The Mercedes who seemingly had found some pace in Qualifying for the main grand prix weren’t able to convert that early success into a double top 5 finish again. However, Russell will start from fourth on the grid which puts him in good points scoring range.

Track Limit Changes Threw a Curve Ball for the Drivers

Track limits were revised at Turns 12 and 13, so the drivers were given a 10-minute “practice familiarization session” prior to the start of the shootout. This extra time proved to be beneficial for Pisatri. Piastri stated the following after the session, “I’m very, very happy. It was a pretty good lap. I saw Lando on the big screen, he made mistake at the last corner, so I don’t know what his lap was looking like, but no, I’m very, very happy. I struggled quite a bit in the first two parts of that qualifying and then got my act together a bit more for the last one.”

Russell’s teammate, 7 time world champion Lewis Hamilton could only find the pace to finish P12 in the shootout. A far cry from his finish in qualifying for the grand prix. Sergio Perez the man feeling pressure in second place in the drivers champion finished P8. Perez’s goal this weekend is to finish in front of Hamilton no matter what. Currently Perez holds a 33 point lead over Hamilton for second place. If he stay ahead that is one less race that Hamilton has to catch up in the points standings. Hamilton struggled with the revised track limits after riding on the curbing multiple times and losing tenths ultimately ruining his lap times.

The sprint race begins later this morning.

Full Qatar Sprint Shootout Results are Below

1Oscar PiastriMcLaren F1 Team1m25.979s1m25.496s1m24.454s
2Lando NorrisMcLaren F1 Team1m25.672s1m24.947s1m24.536s
3Max VerstappenOracle Red Bull Racing1m25.510s1m25.199s1m24.646s
4George RussellMercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team1m25.413s1m25.027s1m24.841s
5Carlos SainzScuderia Ferrari1m25.872s1m25.433s1m25.155s
6Charles LeclercScuderia Ferrari1m26.266s1m25.367s1m25.247s
7Nico HulkenbergMoneyGram Haas F1 Team1m26.450s1m25.499s1m25.320s
8Sergio PerezOracle Bull Racing1m26.123s1m25.143s1m25.382s
9Fernando AlonsoAston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team1m25.936s1m25.344sNo Time Set
10Esteban OconBWT Alpine F1 Team1m26.072s1m25.510sNo Time Set
11Pierre GaslyBWT Alpine F1 Team1m25.829s1m25.686s 
12Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team1m26.424s1m25.962s 
13Valtteri BottasAlfa Romeo F1 Team Stake1m26.449s1m26.236s 
14Liam LawsonScuderia AlphaTauri1m26.202s1m26.584s 
15Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo F1 Team Stake1m26.669s1m54.546s 
16Lance StrollAston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team1m26.849s  
17Alex AlbonWilliams Racing1m26.862s  
18Yuki TsunodaScuderia AlphaTauri 1m26.926s  
19Kevin MagnussenMoneyGram Haas F1 Team1m27.438s  
20Logan SargeantWilliams2m05.741s