Max Verstappen stole pole position from Lewis Hamilton right at the start and he kept the lead for the whole race, with Hamilton, and Valtteri Bottas completing the top three.
Everything was set for the first Sprint Qualifying race of the season, the teams opted for different strategies, and everyone was ready for some spectacle.
It was Lewis Hamilton on pole position, ahead of his rival, Max Verstappen. The Dutch driver stole the lead already at the start as Lewis did not start well. Hamilton kept trying in the second sector, but Max defended hard and maintained the position.
It was Fernando Alonso who had the best start as he recovered six positions, and went up to P5, behind Charles Leclerc. The other Spaniard, Carlos Sainz, had an issue and dropped back to P18 because George Russell touched him and pushed him wide. Nikita Mazepin as well spun at turn three due to a contact.
Lando Norris was in P6, and he was trying to attack Alonso. Behind the Briton there was Sergio Perez, then Daniel Ricciardo, Sebastian Vettel, and Russell in P10.
Perez lost control of the car at the end of the second sector and almost hit the barrier. The mistake made him drop back to P19, not ideal for him.
Meanwhile, Lando managed to overtake Alonso and went up to P5, while Sainz recovered some positions and grabbed P13.
Ricciardo was also attacking Fernando on lap 8, trying to follow the moves of McLaren’s teammate. The Aussie managed to overtake Alonso, who was not giving up, but Ricciardo was faster and kept P6. Sainz as well gained another position, overtaking Kimi Raikkonen.
Alonso was keeping going backward as Vettel was right behind him on lap 11. Meanwhile, Sainz was closing the gap to Pierre Gasly, who was sitting in P11. On lap 14, the Spaniard grabbed P11 leaving Gasly behind him.
On the last lap of the race, Red Bull informed Perez that they had to retire the car, while the other machinery went on to grab pole position ahead of Hamilton, Bottas, Leclerc, and Norris.