Max Verstappen gives chances of winning Saudi Arabian GP from 15th
Max Verstappen admitted “anything is possible” for Sunday’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix despite qualifying a shock 15th after a mechanical failure.
After topping the timesheets in all three practice sessions, Verstappen’s pole position looked a formality at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit.
But a drive shaft issue early in Q2 meant Verstappen could not set a quick time and he starts the race in P15.
Verstappen has won from low down the order before - most notably in Budapest and Spa last year - but said it will be “tough” on a narrow street track like Jeddah.
“It’s the first time I heard about it [the issue],” he told Sky F1 afterwards.
“It’s very annoying for it to happen, we had a really good weekend, the car was working really well - now it will be a bit more tricky to get to the front, but it’s all about scoring points.
“Anything is possible at this track but it’s going to be tough. We have good pace.”
Verstappen’s team-mate Sergio Perez took pole position, while Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso will start alongside him on the front row.
Charles Leclerc qualified second but as a result of a 10-place grid penalty will start in 12th position.
Double world champion Verstappen leads this year’s World Championship after cruising to an opening race victory a fortnight ago in Bahrain.