Conditions in Sao Paulo have been unpredictable ever since the drivers arrived earlier this week, with it raining on average every three days around this time of year in Brazil.
Teams saw a window of opportunity at the start of Q3, with there seemingly being a short period of time at the start of the session before the rain would once again make an appearance, allowing the drivers one shot at a lap on soft tyres if they were quick, which every driver took bar one.
Ferrari sent Carlos Sainz out of the slicks as expected, who managed to finish P5, however the Scuderia put Charles Leclerc straight out on the intermediates which caused him to set the slowest lap time of the session before the rain set in.
While Leclerc has told reporters that he has seen a major improvement in communication from his Ferrari team in the latter stages of this season, former F1 champion Damon Hill has suggested that the team are still yet to shake off their mistake ridden past.
“They’ve got to get themselves together coming off the back of that one,” said the 62-year-old.
“And it’s very difficult to actually stop the panic sometimes in the ranks, because they now know this is not the first time and it’s been a story of their season.
“And now they are going to go into tomorrow and they are probably thinking, part of them negatively thinking, ‘what are we going to do wrong today?’ Instead of thinking ‘that’s not what we do, we’re a professional team, we know the routine’.”
Ferrari have defended their decision to send both their drivers out on different tyres, saying that it was so close to call when the rain would come that they felt the need to gamble one of their drivers with the anticipation of the rain setting in almost immediately.
Questions have been asked of their choice of driver to experiment with, as it seemed the obvious call to risk Sainz with the different tyre set to the rest, considering that the Spaniard will be taking a five-place grid penalty for the race after changing another engine component coming into the weekend.
The Scuderia will be left looking over their shoulders in the championship following their qualifying disappointment, with Mercedes only 40 points behind them, and both drivers out qualifying their Ferrari counterparts.