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Other SportsJapanese Grand Prix qualifying results 2024: Verstappen enjoys 'good day' in Red...

Japanese Grand Prix qualifying results 2024: Verstappen enjoys ‘good day’ in Red Bull F1 one-two

Reigning F1 world champion Max Verstappen took the 36th pole of his career by narrowly beating team-mate Sergio Perez in qualifying for the Formula One Japanese Grand Prix 2024.

Standings leader Verstappen suffered a surprise retirement at the Australian Grand Prix on March 24 but returned in style to beat Perez by 0.066 seconds and set up a Red Bull one-two.

“It was quite close at the end,” said Verstappen, who won the first two races of the season before burning brakes scuppered his run in Melbourne.

“This track overall is quite sensitive to the tyres with the tarmac being really aggressive, and when you want to go to the limit it doesn’t always work out.

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“Nonetheless, the most important thing is being on pole. Of course you want every lap to be perfect but around a track like this that is not always the case.

“It’s been a good day, and a good starting position for tomorrow is what counts. It’s great as a team to be P1 and P2 and hopefully we can keep that going.”

Japanese Grand Prix: Norris ‘very happy’

Lando Norris finished third for McLaren ahead of Melbourne winner Carlos Sainz for Ferrari and Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso.

“It’s always exciting,” the Briton said of the circuit. “You don’t get many chances but we had a good car today and we could fight.

“I did some good laps, especially in Q3. I’m very happy with today. It’s always enjoyable here in front of the fans and a good one for us at McLaren.”

Norris’ team-mate, Oscar Piastri, was sixth, with Lewis Hamilton seventh and George Russell ninth for Mercedes, neither of whom finished in Australia.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc finished eighth and home hero Yuki Tsunoda – tipped by many for a top-10 finish in Suzuka – claimed 10th for RB.

The result meant Red Bull, who are four points above Ferrari at the top of the constructor standings, equalled the record held by Mercedes of four front row lock-outs at the circuit.

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