Oscar Piastri at centre of stunning McLaren feat: 'Mega result'

The Aussie rookie has left the F1 world seriously impressed as McLaren turned a new leaf in qualifying for the British Grand Prix.

Oscar Piastri.

Australian F1 rookie Oscar Piastri, alongside teammate Lando Norris, have powered McLaren to their best qualifying result of the season at the British GP. Norris and Piastri will line up second and third on the grid respectively, a remarkable turnaround from the team's distinct lack of competitiveness at the beginning of the season.

Qualifying was affected by wet weather, however the track had dried enough for all drivers to fit dry tyres as a clear racing line emerged. Not since the 2008 season in which Lewis Hamilton won his first world championship driving for McLaren has the team started on the front row at Silverstone.

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Piastri was very nearly knocked out in Q1, before the car he described as a 'rocket ship' came alive in Q2 and Q3. It was a brilliant performance from the F1 rookie, whose solid debut season has all too often been spoiled by sheer bad luck.

Predictably, reigning world champion Max Verstappen took pole position, but even he was impressed by McLaren's newfound turn of pace. Piastri out-qualified both the Ferrari's of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, as well as Mercedes duo Hamilton and George Russell.

“What a qualifying session!” Piastri said. “We were almost out in Q1! But the car was a rocket ship in Q2 and Q3 and it felt like I put a pretty good lap together.

“It’s a massive result for the team as well. To have both of us up here is a mega result and we have got to try and stay there for tomorrow.”

Meanwhile, Aussie F1 fans waking up to the stunning qualifying results were thrilled to see Piastri's name so high on the grid. Piastri has performed consistently, if not spectacularly, after joining the F1 ranks following championship victories in F3 and F2.

Lando Norris hoping for strong McLaren result at British GP

Norris, who competed against Verstappen throughout both of their junior careers, quipped that Verstappen 'ruins everything' after the Dutchman stole pole position from him very late in the piece. Regardless, the British driver said it was clear McLaren had taken a step forward in terms of pace.

“I was so close,” he said. “Max ruins everything for everyone.

“I was watching the TV screens and I was surprised how long I stayed up there for. I did not make a mistake. It was all about when Max crossed the line and if he made a mistake, not if we could beat him.

“I could hear Zak on the radio during the in-lap, which was the best thing ever. To be second and third was amazing for the whole team.

Lando Norris, Max Verstappen and Oscar Piastri pose for a photo after British GP qualifying.
Lando Norris qualified P2 for the British Grand Prix, behind Red Bull's Max Verstappen and ahead of teammate Oscar Piastri. (Photo by Ben Stansall / AFP) (Photo by BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images)

“It is clear we have made some progress and we have made a decent step forward. It is payback for the work that has been done by the team.

"Max and I are very good friends. We grew up at a similar time, and we share the same mentality because we love it.

“But as soon as we put the helmet on, all the respect we have off the track, we forget that. It makes no difference about us being friends.”

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