F1: Verstappen qualifies on pole for Abu Dhabi GP


ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Formula One champion Max Verstappen qualified on pole position for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Saturday ahead of teammate Sergio Perez as he seeks a record-extending 15th win of the season.

Verstappen set the pace with a lap of 1 minute, 23.824 seconds to beat Perez by .228 seconds. The Mexican driver is aiming to beat Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc to second place in the championship behind Verstappen. Leclerc was .040 off Perez’s time.

Leclerc’s teammate Carlos Sainz was fourth ahead of the Mercedes pair of Lewis Hamilton and George Russell.

Four-time champion Sebastian Vettel qualified his Aston Martin ninth ahead of his last race before retirement. McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo, who is without a race seat for 2023, was 10th.


More AP auto racing: https://apnews.com/hub/auto-racing and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports