How does Qualifying work?

Category: F1

Qualifying (Quali) is a one-hour session used to determine pole position and the order the cars will line up behind pole.

The hour is structured in three sessions – Q1 at 18 minutes, Q2 at 15 minutes and Q3 at 12 minutes.

Teams are free to put their car on track at any stage of Q1 but they must have registered a formal time before the flag drops. At the end of the session, the five slowest cars are dropped and the position they finished Q1 in is the position that they will start from.

The driver one away from the cut-off is referred to as the ‘Driver at Risk’ as one of the cars below him could potentially put in a faster lap and push him below the cut-off line and out of the rest of Quali-

Q2 and Q3 follow the same format with the fastest driver in Q3 securing Pole Position at the front of the grid.


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Andrew Burden

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