Marcus Ericsson has taken pole position for the Macau Grand Prix – despite hitting the barriers close to the end of qualifying and damaging his rear wing.
The TOM'S driver, who had been quickest in first qualifying, saw a host of rivals push him down the order in the second session before he moved back to the front with 10 minutes remaining. It then appeared to all go wrong when he got sideways under braking at Matsuya corner and slid into the barriers – dislodging his rear wing.
A red flag moments later, however, guaranteed that nobody was able to challenge Ericsson's best time, so the Swede kept hold of his slot ahead of Jean-Karl Vernay, Macau rookie Valtteri Bottas and last year's runner-up Edoardo Mortara.
"I was pushing quite hard and I got the pole. But then they went on the radio and said it was tight, there are a lot of guys who are quick," said Ericsson. "I pushed harder and went into the wall. It bent the wishbone but it was not a problem, so it's looking good for tomorrow."
British F3 champion Daniel Ricciardo will start fifth after his hopes of taking a sensational pole on debut at Macau were wrecked when he ran into the barriers at Lisboa – just brushing them with his front wing.