Isack Hadjar will start the Monaco Formula 2 sprint race from pole position but was aiming for more in Friday’s qualifying session.
The Hitech Grand Prix driver told Formula Scout that he had been on course to set a faster time when he came upon Arthur Leclerc‘s crashed DAMS car at the exit of the final corner.
“I got the red flag just before I completed my lap,” he said. “Everybody else got their laps in but I was the first to be caught.”
In addition, he was concerned that he had picked up debris as he found his way through the corner.
Hadjar, who took a pole and a race win at Monaco in Formula Regional in 2021, is aware that the difficulty of overtaking gives him a good opportunity to take his maiden F2 win.
“The plan is simple – get a good start and make no mistakes.”
Hadjar admitted that the step to F2 has been “tougher than I expected,” with a best result from the opening four rounds of sixth in Melbourne.
He will have fellow Red Bull junior driver Ayumu Iwasa for company on the first row of the reversed grid, the pair having both placed fifth fastest in their respective qualifying groups.
Hadjar’s team-mate Jak Crawford starts fourth alongside Jehan Daruvala, who caused a second red flag in the first group when he went into the barriers at Mirabeau, bringing an early end to proceedings. Richard Verschoor and Zane Maloney make up row three.