Formula 1 Racing

The F1 rule that gave pole to Russell over Verstappen after setting the same time

Norris leads wet-to-dry opening practice

However, it was the Mercedes driver who got pole position, his second in F1 following on from his maiden one in Hungary in 2022.

It was the first time since 1997 that fans witnessed such a situation. 

What happens when two F1 drivers set the same time in qualifying?

The fourth paragraph of Article 39.4 of the FIA F1 Sporting Regulations, i.e. (iv), states that: “If two or more drivers set identical times during Q1, Q2 or Q3 or SQ1, SQ2 or SQ3, priority will be given to the driver who set it first”.

In other words, the driver who has set the time before the other driver is ahead.

In Canada, Russell had set the fastest time and then Verstappen matched it.

In fact, the Briton had another shot, in which however he failed to improve, leading to the curious situation of both him and Verstappen with a 1:12.000s lap time.

The previous time this happened

Michael Schumacher, Jacques Villeneuve and Heinz-Harald Frentzen set exactly the same time in qualifying for the European GP in the 1997 season, a 1:21.072.

The pole position went to Villeneuve, who had been the first to cross the finish line, and the next day he would go on to win the world championship after the well-known controversy with Schumacher.

That was a time when F1 qualifying was very different, with a one-hour session format, so Villeneuve set his time 15 minutes before Schumacher, and Frentzen even later than the German.

Have two F1 drivers ever tied in a race?

No, it has never happened that two drivers reach the finish line of an F1 race tied.

The smallest gap at the end of a race was in the 2002 United States GP, when Ferrari achieved a one-two finish and Rubens Barrichello took the chequered flag just 0.011s ahead of his teammate Schumacher.

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