Lando Norris secures stunning pole

Lando Norris secures stunning pole for FORMULA 1 ARAMCO GRAN PREMIO DE ESPAÑA 2024

The McLaren driver has bagged his second career F1 pole position, proving himself to be Verstappen’s main challenger and snatching his Circuit record.

Formula 1

The FORMULA 1 ARAMCO GRAN PREMIO DE ESPAÑA 2024 saw a somewhat unexpected interloper slugging it out in today’s adrenalin-fuelled battle for pole. Although Lando Norris had been in the running, Max Verstappen, Carlos Sainz, Charles Leclerc and Lewis Hamilton were also strong contenders. But the Englishman’s final Q3 run treated the crowd of 104,223 F1 fans at the Circuit to a stratospheric lap that secured him P1 for tomorrow’s race.

Lando Norris scored his second FIA ​​Formula 1 World Championship pole position at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, stopping the clock at 1:11.383 and breaking the previous lap record set last year by Max Verstappen (1:12.272) during an unexpectedly fast qualifying session. This result from Norris and McLaren interferes with the World Championship leader’s personal mission to land his third consecutive victory at the Circuit.

Max Verstappen appeared to have it in the bag and, despite a fourth place in the morning’s final practice session, in his usual style, the Dutchman went straight to pole in Q3 but, in a final flying lap under the checkered flag, Norris managed to shave 20 thousandths of a second off his time. The polesitter has gone on to stand on the top rung of the podium in 24 of the 33 Grand Prix races held at the Circuit to date, so Verstappen will have to come out of the blocks fighting if he wants to win.

McLaren Formula 1 Team and Oracle Red Bull Racing may have taken over the front row of the grid but they will have both Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team drivers nipping at their heels, with Lewis Hamilton (1:11.701) lining up in third and George Russell in fourth ( 1:11.703). There was nothing to separate the two teammates in their final flying laps and we can look forward to a fierce battle between the two rivals on the track tomorrow.

A strong performance from Mercedes left the Scuderia Ferrari HP team somewhat in the shade. Carlos Sainz’s P1 in this morning’s final Practice raised the hopes of his home crowd but, in the end, it was not to be and Charles Leclerc will start from fifth place tomorrow, with Spain’s Carlos Sainz alongside him in sixth. Everything points to another fight of titans from within the same team straight off the line.

Pierre Gasly (BWT Alpine F1 Team), Checo Pérez (Oracle Red Bull Racing), Esteban Ocon (BWT Alpine F1 Team) and Oscar Piastri (McLaren Formula 1 Team) will line up in seventh to tenth place, respectively. Despite his tireless efforts, a frustrated Fernando Alonso failed to make it passed Q2, with a lap time of 1:12.128, 19 thousandths of a second off the cut, at that time set by Esteban Ocon (BWT Alpine F1 Team). Alonso will start from eleventh place tomorrow.

Victor Martins charges to victory in the Formula 2 Sprint race

Victor Martins (ART Grand Prix) dominated the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya Formula 2 Sprint race from beginning to end. The Alpine F1 team Academy driver started from the front row of the inverted grid and charged to the front of the pack off the start line, leading the 26-lap race from then on to cross the finish line 4.4 seconds ahead of Ritomo Miyata (Rodin Motorsport). The Japanese driver was deprived of his second place, however, after picking up a five-second penalty for exceeding track limits, relegating him to eighth, the last of the Sprint race’s point-scoring positions.

Second place then went to Kush Maini (Invicta Racing), who, despite lining up in pole position on the inverted grid, lost ground at the start and dropped down to fifth. Juan Manuel Correa (DAMS) was third. Championship leader Paul Aron (Hitech Pulse Eight) staged a brilliant comeback from ninth place on the grid to finish fourth, having overtaken top rookie finisher Gabriel Bortoleto (Invicta Racing) on the final lap.

Debut Formula 3 win for Mari Boya

Mari Boya (Campos Racing) won this morning’s Formula 3 Sprint race at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. The Irish driver started third on the inverted grid, taking over at the front after a collision between the two leaders on Lap 3 of the 21-lap race. Trident teammates Santiago Ramos and Sami Meguetounif lined up together on the front row of the grid but the French driver made contact with the Mexican’s car at the end of the main straight and knocked them both out of the running.

Boya inherited the lead and held it until the end, despite the challenges launched by Alex Dunne (MP Motorsport). The British driver attempted to overtake the Catalan on Lap 16, but Boya held out under the pressure. Two laps later, with only three to go, Gabriele Minì (Pulse Racing) crashed into Sebastián Montoya (Campos Racing) at Turn 5, sending them both into the gravel. The Safety Car tempered the action in the closing laps and Boya cruised across the line to secure his first F3 victory in his second year in the category. Another Campos Racing driver, Oliver Goethe, finished in third place.

Another victory for Pulling and podium for Martí in the F1 Academy

Abbi Pulling has taken another step towards securing herself the championship title, with the fastest lap and victory in the first race of the weekend for the women’s competition promoted by F1®. The Alpine Academy driver dominated from start to finish and did not put a foot wrong. Homegrown talent Nerea Martí was the best of the rest, with the Campos Racing driver improving on her third starting position to the detriment of teammate Chloe Chambers, who had to settle for third place. Nerea Martí will slog it out to be part of another podium ceremony tomorrow as she lines up fourth on the grid.

Official Circuit photo for the Women in Motorsport Commission

The FIA’s Women in Motorsport Commission invited some of this weekend’s key female figures for an official group photo. This International Automobile Federation programme, set up in 2009, seeks to demonstrate that motorsport is open to women across all areas of activity, be it as competitors, officials, team managers, engineers or mechanics and, therefore, promotes women’s participation in motorsport through actions and events like that organised today at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. The photo call included drivers from the F1 Academy, as well as members of the Catalan Automobile Federation’s “Dona Gas” programme.

A sustainable event

Under the 3C (Conscience, Commitment and Coherence) management philosophy – which integrates social, economic and environmental aspects – the Circuit works to act responsibly in its mission, “Driving for a better future”, within the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

As a highlight, this year’s Grand Prix, which is ISO 20121 certified, will have an important new feature: the largest public self-consumption photovoltaic installation in Catalonia, which became operational last October, providing the Catalan circuit with a total of 2,319 solar panels, which generate 50% of the energy consumed.

Other actions underway at the circuit are the rental of low-emission generators, the donation of surplus food, the range of km0 and organic food outlets, the provision of drinking water fountains in public areas, the improvement of the biodiversity of green areas, collaboration with companies with social value, the recovery and recycling of waste, the promotion of sustainable mobility, the promotion of the circular economy and many others.

Activities for all

Located in the public area behind the Main Grandstand, the Fan Zone has become a firm favourite among visitors, offering F1-related activities for everyone, including eSports simulators, podium and driver selfie recreation areas, wind tunnel simulations etc. Both the Green Zone and the Kids Zone are located in the Crater Forest area. The Summer Fest space (behind Grandstand B) is this year’s exciting new area, with numerous fun activities to be enjoyed, and the entertainment continues with performances from DJs on stage in the Pelouse Jove area.

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