As the qualifying round for the Brazilian Grand Prix unfolded, tumultuous weather played a pivotal role. The incident involving the collapse of a grandstand’s roof due to severe weather conditions marked an unprecedented turn of events at the Interlagos circuit.
Key Takeaways: The last corner grandstand at the Interlagos circuit suffered significant damage as its roof collapsed under harsh weather conditions, leading to debris on the track. Formula 1 photographer Andy Hone reported the incident, noting that while the structural damage was considerable, there were fortunately no injuries. The start of the qualifying session was delayed as the track was cleared of debris, and conditions subsequently led to a red flag during Q3, finalizing the grid positions prematurely.
At the famed Interlagos circuit, a sudden turn of weather threw both drivers and spectators into disarray. Grey clouds thickened as Q3 progressed, culminating in an unexpected spectacle.
The conditions were so severe that a portion of the grandstand roofing succumbed, scattering debris across the circuit’s final corner, as captured by Andy Hone’s lens.
Miraculously, amid the chaos, no injuries were reported.
This extraordinary occurrence prompted officials to postpone the start of qualifying, a decision rooted in the safety of the competitors and the need to ensure a clear track.
The drama did not end there, as the already challenging conditions were exacerbated, bringing about a premature red flag during Q3. The stewards confirmed that the session would not resume, sealing the qualifying fates of the drivers.
“The roof of the grandstand collapsed, which in turn caused all sorts of falling debris,” reported the seasoned Formula 1 photographer.
Prior to the suspension, the track had been a battleground for positions. Max Verstappen, in his RB19, masterfully claimed the pole position, with Charles Leclerc and Lance Stroll securing second and third places respectively. Despite George Russell’s 2022 victory and commendable pace in the Mercedes W14, along with strong showings from Ferrari and McLaren, the conditions proved to be the ultimate equaliser.
Sergio Perez, having set the thirteenth fastest time in Q1, faced an uphill battle, one that the weather made insurmountable. The session’s closure locked in the grid, leaving drivers like Alex Albon, who had faced lap deletions earlier, in less favorable starting positions.