Event: Australian Grand Prix
Track: Albert Park Circuit

Warm-up lap starts at: 15:00 Local | 07:00 CET | 06:00 UK | 22:00 LA | 14:00 Tokio

F1 Starting Grid 2023 Australian Grand Prix

Top 3 qualifiers for the 2023 Australian F1 GP: 1. Max Verstappen, 2. George Russell & 3. Lewis Hamilton

Few fans would have doubted Max Verstappen's ability to secure pole position for the second time in Melbourne, driving the Red Bull RB18. However, many were caught off-guard when Mercedes found themselves in P3 and P4, instead of their usual dominant positions.

The session was filled with surprises, none more so than the remarkable performance of Alex Albon. The Williams driver extracted the maximum potential from his FW45, even clocking the fastest second sector time of the entire session. Nico Hülkenberg, in his Haas, also demonstrated that he hasn't lost his qualifying prowess. While last year's hero at Haas was Kevin Magnussen, Hülkenberg has now emerged as the one showcasing the true qualifying capabilities of the VF-23.

Sergio Pérez faces an uphill battle, as he will start from the back of the grid. Determined to keep his 2023 drivers' title hopes alive, Pérez must navigate through the field and secure crucial points during the race.

F1 Starting Grid 2023 Australian GP

Pos No Driver Team Lap Time Pole gap
1 1 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:16,732
2 63 George Russell Mercedes 1:16,968 +0,236s
3 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:17,104 +0,372s
4 14 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 1:17,139 +0,407s
5 55 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1:17,270 +0,538s
6 18 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 1:17,308 +0,576s
7 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:17,369 +0,637s
8 23 Alex Albon Williams 1:17,609 +0,877s
9 10 Pierre Gasly Alpine 1:17,675 +0,943s
10 27 Nico Hülkenberg Haas 1:17,735 +1,003s
11 31 Esteban Ocon Alpine 1:17,768 +1,036s
12 22 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1:18,099 +1,367s
13 4 Lando Norris McLaren 1:18,119 +1,387s
14 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:18,129 +1,397s
15 21 Nyck de Vries AlphaTauri 1:18,335 +1,603s
16 81 Oscar Piastri McLaren 1:18,517 +1,785s
17 24 Zhou Guanyu Alfa Romeo 1:18,540 +1,808s
18 2 Logan Sargeant Williams 1:18,557 +1,825s
19 77 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo 1:18,714 +1,982s
20 11 Sergio Pérez Red Bull no time -

Race Strategy 2023 Australian F1 GP

Optimal One-Stop Strategy Unveiled for the Australian Grand Prix

Based on the latest simulation data, a one-stop strategy emerges as the fastest approach for the Australian Grand Prix. Ideally, drivers should commence the race on Pirelli's P Zero Yellow medium tires, switching to White hard tires between laps 17 and 23.

A marginally slower alternative involves starting on soft tires before transitioning to hard tires between laps 15 and 21. While a two-stop strategy is viable, utilizing all three tire compounds, it is not as rapid as a single-stop strategy. In this case, the most effective tactic entails starting on soft tires, changing to hard tires between laps 10 and 15, and finally adopting medium tires between laps 38 and 45 for the closing stages of the race.

Contrary to last year, the softest tire available this weekend - the C4 - plays a significant role in race strategy, as opposed to the C5 used in 2022.

F1 Starting Grid 2023 Australian Grand Prix

Pirelli's Head of Motorsport - Mario Isola said:
“This was a particularly intense Saturday. Yesterday’s rain largely prevented the teams from gathering tyre data over long runs, which meant that there were two jobs to do in FP3 today: preparing for qualifying and carrying out some long runs on full fuel. From what we have seen over the two days so far, the three available compounds are performing as we expected. Both the soft and the medium showed a little bit of graining on a track that still isn’t rubbered in, with low temperatures, while the hard demonstrated itself to be very consistent and not so far from the other two compounds in terms of performance."

"There was a threat of rain throughout qualifying, but with the exception of a couple of drops in Q3, the session was run entirely on dry-weather tyres. Leaving aside Verstappen’s final run, today was very close, with barely four-tenths of a second covering P2 to P7 on the grid. A one-stopper remains the optimal strategy, with medium-hard being theoretically fastest and soft-hard slightly slower. This validates the decision to bring the C4 this year, offering a wider range of strategies compared to last year.

"Since 2022, it’s clear to see how much performance has evolved, with the latest generation of cars going nearly a second a half faster here. Verstappen’s pole time was 1.1 seconds faster than the equivalent from Charles Leclerc last year – but that was set with the softest C5 compound, which is around 0.4 seconds faster than the C4: the softest option in Australia this weekend.”

✅ Check out our 2023 Australian F1 GP preview

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2 F1 Fan comments on “F1 Starting Grid 2023 Australian Grand Prix

  1. Jere Jyrälä

    I expect Checo to have a more difficult time gaining positions than Max in Jeddah, given the Albert Park circuit is less overtaking-friendly even after last season's configuration changes.

    • Nobodysprefect

      Well the Red Bull does have a great top speed these days. With 4 DRS zones he might get very far. It's will more about if he can keep his cool and out of trouble in the first laps.


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