The Italian produced an eye-catching performance at Zandvoort as he progressed into Q3 for only the second time this season and went on to secure his best-ever qualifying performance with a stunning lap for P7.

Not only did Giovinazzi beat both Alpines and McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo, he came within a tenth of out-qualifying the Ferraris as he ended up 0.705s away from Max Verstappen’s pole effort.

Giovinazzi, who is out of contract at the end of the year, faces an uncertain future at Alfa Romeo but hopes his starring display in qualifying will help him secure his seat for a fourth season.

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“For sure it will help but we know how it is Formula 1, I did my best,” Giovinazzi said. “The race is tomorrow, but we did the right way. It’s been like this from 2019 – September for me is quite busy.

“But I say many times if I do my job I will keep my seat and this is what I did in the last two years.”

But Giovinazzi nearly didn’t make it out for the final session after a wheelnut problem in the pits at the end of his Q2 run almost derailed his qualifying altogether.

A monumental effort from his mechanics fixed the issue under the red flag delays caused by crashes for the Williams duo and Giovinazzi was sent out to contest Q3.

“The qualifying was a little bit of a rollercoaster because at one moment we had a little bit of an issue with a wheel[nut] in Q2 but the guys didn’t give up,” he explained. “So thanks to them because we went to Q3 and the car felt great.

“The lap was mega and I think we deserved this result and we start in a good position for tomorrow.”

Seventh on the grid marks Alfa Romeo’s best result of the year so far and equals Giovinazzi’s own career best starting position from Austria 2019.

And with drivers expecting overtaking around Zandvoort’s tight and twisty to be extremely difficult, Giovinazzi is determined to hold onto his place in Sunday’s grand prix.

“[The aim is] keep the position,” Giovinazzi said. “We start from a good position in P7, I know something can happen in the front so we’ll see, but for sure the target is to keep P7.

“This year is really difficult to understand what track can be better for us. Yesterday from FP1 it felt the car is here and we had a good pace, and when it is like this it helps build up confidence with the track and the car and you can put it together in quali.”

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