Leclerc on Australian F1 GP pole with Verstappen second and Hamilton fifth

Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Pérez was in third, with McLaren’s Lando Noris taking an excellent fourth place. On his first hot runs in Q3 Leclerc, who has looked in fine form all weekend, set the pace with a 1min 18.239sec time but it was only one tenth up on Pérez, who had been very competitive throughout qualifying. Pérez pushed on his final hot lap and came so close, within one thousandth of Leclerc’s time, while Verstappen put together a clean lap to edge into the top spot. This year with Mercedes still off the pace, Leclerc’s challenge is from a surging Red Bull and he did superbly to see them off on a circuit where they had looked strong.

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