Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix – Qualifying and Sprint


The first of two races in Italy, the Emilia-Romagna GP is at the Imola circuit named after Enzo & Dino Ferrari.

Qualifying, to set the grid for the Sprint:

Q1: ALB’s rear right brake exploded, showering debris across the track; red flag so the track can be cleaned up
HAM and RUS only just made it through to Q2 at the last moment
Bottom 5: TSU, GAS, LAT, OCO, ALB* (*No time set)

Q2: Most drivers doing multiple quick laps as they know there’s rain coming
SAI loses the tail and tags the wall; another red flag
Middle of the grid: RUS, SCH, HAM, ZHO, STR
First time since Japan 2012 that Mercedes haven’t been in Q1!

Q3: MAG’s skipped across the gravel, just tapped the wall; another red flag
MAG’s got himself out of the gravel and back to the pits
Front of the grid: VER, LEC, NOR, MAG, ALO, RIC, PER, BOT, VET, SAI

One change for 2022 is that the top 8 Sprint finishers get points compared to just the top 3 last season.

Grid for the Sprint: VER, LEC, NOR, MAG, ALO, RIC, PER, BOT, VET, SAI, RUS, SCH, HAM, ZHO, STR, TSU, GAS, LAT, OCO, ALB
It’s a bit overcast; NOR reported spots of rain as he made his way to the grid

VER leads everyone away on the formation lap
Most are starting on the soft compound tyres; MAG, SCH and LAT on mediums
ALO slow to get away, but he’ll be able to reclaim his grid spot
Radio from LAT concerned about TSU’s brakes overheating

01/21: LEC leads into Turn 1
PER takes P6 from RIC
Yellow flag – ZHO is off – he’s hit the wall
SC deployed
GAS limping back to the pits; his front right tyre is shredded
Replay of the collision between ZHO and GAS

02[SC]: LEC, VER, NOR, MAG, PER, RIC, ALO, SAI, VET, BOT, SCH, RUS, TSU, STR, HAM, OCO, LAT, ALB, GAS; out: ZHO
Replay of the start; RIC and MAG made contact but both continued OK

03[SC]: Marshals clearing ZHO’s car and checking the wall
Incident involving ZHO and GAS – no further action

04[SC]: SC in at the end of this lap

05/21: LEC, VER, NOR, MAG, PER, RIC, ALO, SAI, VET, BOT, SCH, RUS, TSU, STR, HAM, OCO, LAT, ALB, GAS
ALO getting out of shape through the chicane
Black and white flag for MAG for weaving on the straight
(MAG is on mediums and was probably trying to warm his tyres)

07: SAI around ALO to take P7
PER closing on MAG

08: PER has DRS; easily past MAG to take P4 before Turn 1
HAM takes P14 from STR

09: BOT closing on VET; takes P9

10/21: LEC, VER, NOR, PER, MAG, RIC, SAI, ALO, BOT, VET, SCH, RUS, TSU, HAM, STR, OCO, ALB, GAS, LAT; out: ZHO
PER tucked up behind NOR
SAI closing on RIC

11: PER takes P3
RIC takes P5 from MAG
SAI now closing on MAG

12: SAI fastest lap 1:19.044 (but there’s no points for f/lap in the sprint)
SAI takes P6

13: SAI closing up to RIC
MAG has ALO and BOT with DRS behind him

14: SAI uses DRS to glide past RIC and take P5

15/21: LEC, VER, PER, NOR, SAI, RIC, MAG, ALO, BOT, VET, SCH, RUS, TSU, HAM, STR, OCO, ALB, GAS, LAT
PER f/lap 1:19.012
SCH takes P10 from VET

16: Black and white flag for ALO for weaving on the straight
BOT takes P8 from ALO

17: VET is holding up RUS, TSU, HAM, STR and OCO
VER has closed up to 0.6sec behind LEC
Radio for VER telling him LEC has graining on his front left tyre

18: VER still has DRS behind LEC
SAI almost within DRS range of NOR

19: VER right under LEC’s rear wing
SAI past NOR for P4

20/21: LEC, VER, PER, SAI, NOR, RIC, BOT, MAG, ALO, SCH, RUS, VET, TSU, HAM, STR, OCO, GAS, ALB, LAT
VER around the outside of LEC for P1

21: TSU past VET for P12
VER tells his engineer not to talk to him when he’s braking

VER takes the chequered flag
Provisional grid for the race: LEC, VER, PER, SAI, NOR, RIC, BOT, MAG, ALO, SCH, RUS, TSU, VET, HAM, STR, OCO, GAS, ALB, LAT, ZHO

[2022 calendar and line-up]