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Live: F1 Saudi Arabian GP commentary and updates

Follow the live action as the Formula 1 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Live: F1 Saudi Arabian GP commentary and updates

After Max Verstappen dominated practice, a driveshaft failure on his Red Bull dumped him out of Q2 in qualifying and means he starts the race in Jeddah from 15th place.

Team-mate Sergio Perez starts on pole, beating Charles Leclerc to top spot in qualifying, who in turn also drops down the starting order due to a 10-place grid penalty for an electrical package change following his Bahrain retirement.

Leclerc’s penalty elevates Fernando Alonso on to the front row for Aston Martin, with George Russell in third place for Mercedes.

The Saudi Arabian GP starts at 5:00pm GMT.

By: Haydn Cobb, Megan White, Stefan Mackley


  • Perez wins the Saudi Arabian GP from Red Bull team-mate Verstappen
  • The Dutchman finishes second having started 15th, but benefitted from an early safety car after Stroll stops on track
  • Alonso finishes third but is penalised post-race to drop to fourth and pushes Russell on to the podium
  • Alonso, who was penalised for being out of his grid slot at the start, given a 10-second post-race penalty for not serving his initial penalty correctly
  • Hamilton finishes fifth, with the Ferraris of Sainz and Leclerc completing the top seven
  1. Perez, Red Bull
  2. Verstappen, Red Bull
  3. Russell, Mercedes
  4. Alonso, Aston Martin
  5. Hamilton, Mercedes
  6. Sainz, Ferrari
  7. Leclerc, Ferrari
  8. Ocon, Alpine
  9. Gasly, Alpine
  10. Magnussen, Haas
Status: Stopped
There is plenty more to come, as F1 heads to Australia in two weeks for another bonza weekend at Albert Park. Until then, have a lovely rest of your Sunday. Go well!


So, two races down, two Red Bull 1-2s... and hard luck to Alonso who is denied his 100th F1 podium despite celebrating it before his penalty came in.
Here's the full Saudi Arabian GP report, including the Alonso post-race penalty:
It could have been even worse for Alonso, as the new results put him fourth and just 0.3s ahead of Hamilton in fifth.
It appears the rear jackman touched Alonso's car too soon while he was serving his five-second penalty picked up for his incorrect grid slot, so it is a straightforward penalty if truth be told.
Alonso loses his podium! The 10-second penalty has been delivered and he drops to fourth in the final results!
The FIA stewards are investigating Alonso for serving his penalty incorrectly. Last time out Ocon got a 10-second penalty for the same offence, so if he is found guilty he could still lose his 100th F1 podium.
Still, it is the Mexican national anthem that plays on the podium, for the fifth time in Perez's career. Four of his five F1 wins have come on street circuits.
In the cooldown room Perez asks Verstappen if he went for fastest lap at the end of the race, which he confirms. The pair share glances, it looks like Perez wasn't too happy with that. It did cost him the championship lead, after all.
Verstappen on his 15th to 2nd charge: "It wasn't easy to get through the field. In the first sector at the start it was difficult and I was sliding around. We settled for second [after the driveshaft issue] so a good recovery in the end."
Alonso on third place and his 100th F1 podium: "What a start to the season, unthinkable a month ago. These guys have made a fantastic car and a fantastic strategy. I need to review [the start] as I made a mistake."
"It turned out to be tougher than expected. The safety car tried to take the victory from us again here, but not this year," Perez tells David Coulthard in the top three interviews.
Tsunoda just misses out on the points in 11th, ahead of Hulkenberg, Zhou, de Vries, Piastri, Sargeant, Norris and Bottas. Just two retirements: Albon and Stroll.
Russell in fourth leads home Mercedes team-mate Hamilton in fifth, with Sainz in sixth and Leclerc seventh for Ferrari. The two-by-twos continue, with Ocon eighth and Gasly ninth for Alpine. Magnussen rounds out the points in 10th for Haas.
Sargeant just about manages to hold off Norris at the last moment!
Alonso completes the podium, his 100th F1 career rostrum, and he finishes 5.1s ahead of Russell so even if a penalty is incoming he should keep hold of third.
Piastri makes it past Sargeant for 15th
But it doesn't stop Perez from winning the 2023 Saudi Arabian GP! It is a Red Bull 1-2 and Verstappen does take the fastest lap bonus point to keep the championship lead!
Final lap time, and Verstappen is setting fastest mini sector times...
"It'd be nice to be five seconds clear of Russell, but we think we are all clean," Alonso is told on Aston Martin team radio. Maybe they also suspect a penalty incoming?