Oscar Piastri put in a stunning lap to claim his fifth consecutive pole ahead of a strong Jack Doohan in Abu Dhabi.
The Formula 2 cars departed the pits to traverse the Yas Marina Circuit to qualify for the final round of the 2021 season.
The first runs of qualifying saw a close squabble for the early provisional pole. It was Oscar Piastri who managed to top the timing sheets with a 1:36.044 with his teammate Robert Shwartzman trailing by around a tenth of a second. Jehan Daruvala slotted in behind in third.
Ralph Boschung posted a good lap during the second runs for the drivers, briefly topping the session. His efforts proved ineffective against the flying Piastri, who soared over 3 tenths quicker than the Swiss driver.
Then came the tense silence on the track as the drivers remained stationary in the pit lane. By this point, P3 in the drivers’ standings Guanyu Zhou sat 8th fastest, 6 tenths off his rival.
Under 10 minutes remained of the session as the drivers crossed the start/finish line for their third flying laps.
Boschung made an improvement on his previous lap, setting the fastest final sector to remain in P2. He ended up just a tenth shy of the Australian in P1. Zhou, meanwhile, improved to 3rd place. However, this would not last long as Shwartzman leaped ahead of the pair. The Russian just lost out on stealing P1 away that lap, with a tight 0.059-second margin separating the PREMA teammates.
Minutes later, Zhou snatched P1 away, improving by 3 hundredths upon Piastri’s lap. Zhou’s lead lasted mere seconds as Jack Doohan punched in a competitive lap, pushing his way into the fight for pole. But the late surge from Zhou and Doohan did not stop Piastri from improving even further to take back pole position in Abu Dhabi. Robert Shwartzman was unable to set a similar lap time and settled for P4.
The top 10 in Formula 2 qualifying:
|2||Jack Doohan||MP Motorsport||+0.213|
|7||Liam Lawson||Hitech GP||+0.434|