2022 AM Wings_Mono Negative
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Top 10 for Sebastian in qualifying at Suzuka

Sebastian will start from ninth on the grid for Sunday's Japanese Grand Prix after a great performance in qualifying.

Japanese GP

Conditions were perfect at Suzuka for Saturday's running after persistent rain on Friday.

The team added 50 laps to its weekend total in a crucial Free Practice Three session – the only dry running before qualifying.

Sebastian then took the team into the top 10 shootout after making it through the first two parts of the session.

Sebastian

With lots of data to gather ahead of qualifying, Sebastian took to the circuit on the Soft tyres at the start of FP3.

In an 11-lap stint, he put in a best time of 1.36.557 on his second flying lap, before returning to the garage.

He later emerged onto the circuit on the Mediums and improved to a 1.33.205 in a short six-lap run.

As the session came towards its conclusion, Sebastian took to the circuit on Softs and delivered a 1.32.222 on his qualifying sim to go 14th overall, racking up 25 laps in the hour of running.

Practice report by Aramco

Plenty of wet running on Friday at Suzuka

Persistent rain severely affected the opening day of running at the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka, with Lance the faster AMF1 driver across the day.

Read more
Japanese GP
Japanese GP

In the first part of qualifying, Sebastian opted for two runs – each with one timed lap.

His first effort was a 1.31.884, before improving to a 1.31.256 to squeeze into the second part of qualifying.

Sebastian repeated this strategy in Q2. His first time was a 1.30.985, which put him in the mix to make it into Q3.

His second effort resulted in a brilliant lap of 1.30.656, which was good enough to make it into Q3.

In Q3, Sebastian did just one flying lap. He put in a 1.30.554 early on for his final qualifying lap, which was good enough for ninth on the grid for Sunday's Grand Prix.

FP3
1.32.222
P14
Q1
1.31.256
P15
Q2
1.30.656
P10
Q3
1.30.554
P09

"It is so much more fun around here than at the other circuits! I mean, the cars and the speeds are great – but at this place you feel alive.

"I have enjoyed it so much over the years – and I had a wonderful day today. We will see what we can do tomorrow, but I am just very happy about today.

"At the same time, I am a bit sad – because it is the last time I will ever tackle this track in qualifying trim. I do not mind if it rains tomorrow – I cannot influence the weather! – but I think wet conditions would probably be a bit better for us.

"Still, we had a strong day today and I think we can make a difference managing the tyres whatever the weather.

"Laps like these make me feel sad about leaving F1."

Lance

With just 60 minutes of dry running in FP3, Lance wasted no time in getting onto the circuit at the start of the session on the Soft tyres.

His best time on the tyres came on his second flying lap – a 1.36.382 – before he settled into a long run of 10 laps before pitting.

He returned to the track a short while later, this time for a shorter stint on the Medium compound, and improved, again on his second flying lap, to a 1.33.517.

In the final 10 minutes, when the track was at its best, Lance did a qualifying simulation on Softs. His time was a 1.31.838, which put him 10th overall, before he extended his run to eight laps to conclude the session.

At the start of Q1, Lance did one flying lap each on two sets of new Soft tyres.

His first time was a 1.31.518, which was in the mix to make it into Q2.

FP3
1.31.838
P10
Q1
1.31.419
P19

On his second run, Lance locked up into the Turn 11 hairpin, which lost him time.

Despite that, he improved to a 1.31.419. But he missed out on making the cut into Q2 and will start the race from 19th on the grid.

"Unfortunately, I locked up in the hairpin at Turn 11 and lost three tenths, and that was the difference between us making it out of Q1 today.

"However, the car was good to drive, and it was great fun out there driving Suzuka in the dry once again.

"It is not ideal to be starting from 19th, but tomorrow is a new day and we will see what we can do in the race.

"If the weather does turn wet again as it did on Friday, it will provide some good opportunities for us to move up the order."

Mike Krack, Team Principal

"Sebastian drove a strong lap in Q3 today and will line up in P9 for tomorrow's Japanese Grand Prix as a result. From there, he is in a good position to drive for points.

"Lance was on a quick lap in Q1 when unfortunately he locked up into the hairpin, ending his chances of making it through to Q2.

"But the weather forecast is uncertain for tomorrow afternoon, so a points-scoring finish is not impossible for him."

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