First Q3 of the season as Antonio cracks the top ten
2021 FIA Formula One Monaco Grand Prix – Qualifying – Saturday
The big steps forward made by the team finally paid off as Antonio Giovinazzi claimed his, and the team’s, first Q3 of the year on the legendary streets of Monaco. It was a masterpiece by the team – the driving, the car, the timing from the pit-wall all coming together to produce a brilliant Saturday result that places us in an excellent position ahead of the race.
Having made a habit of qualifying to Q2 but having missed out on the top ten by tiny margins before, it was a relief to finally break into the final segment of qualifying. Antonio will start tomorrow’s race in P10, ready to fight from lights to flag for the points he and the team so thoroughly deserve. Behind him, Kimi will aim to make inroads towards the top ten, starting in P14 with his C41.
Monaco is a track with no margin for error. The race will be long and will offer opportunities and threats in equal measures. Tomorrow is another day and a new battle to fight but, for now, we just enjoy this first Q3 of the season.
Frédéric Vasseur, Team Principal Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN and CEO Sauber Motorsport AG: “Today’s result is the reward for all the work the team put in since last year and a display of the big steps forward we have made since testing. We had been close to Q3 before and to finally place a car in it is a good result, but we haven’t brought home what we want yet. The race is tomorrow and we will need to deliver another performance like today’s to score the points we deserve. We are confident in our team and we know we can fight at this level, so let’s see what tomorrow brings.”
Kimi Räikkönen (car number 7):
Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN C41 (Chassis 04/Ferrari)
FP3: 8th / 1:12.298 (25 laps)
Q1: 1:11.899 (11 laps)
Q2: 14th / 1:11.642 (10 laps)
“The car felt ok, even though I had more confidence in the tyres this morning. It’s easy to lose that feeling, especially around here, and it’s these small things that end up making a big difference in laptime. I don’t think much went wrong, we just weren’t fast enough in the laps that mattered. Of course, you always want to be higher on the grid, but we’ll need to make the best of it tomorrow. Hopefully we can have a bit of luck as you never know what’s going to happen. We need to survive the first few corners and then do our race.”
Antonio Giovinazzi (car number 99):
Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN C41 (Chassis 03/Ferrari)
FP3: 11th / 1:12.539 (21 laps)
Q1: 1:11.658 (11 laps)
Q2: 1:11.409 (10 laps)
Q3: 10th / 1:11.779 (7 laps)
“I am really happy about our first Q3 of the season. It’s a day in which we put all together and we finally got what we have been deserving for a while. We did everything right – the car felt great from the start of the weekend, the team sent us out at just the right time and we put the lap together when it mattered. The only regret is the red flag at the end, as I think that lap would have been good and we could have been even higher. I felt confident around here from FP1 and this feeling does so much on a track like Monaco. Tomorrow we need more of the same: a clean start, a good strategy and a good race. Hopefully we can bring home a good result and our first points.”