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Vettel on Pole, Ferrari secure front-row for first time since 2008

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Ferrari F1 drivers’ lock-out front-row for first time since 2008. Championship leader Sebastian Vettel on pole ahead of his team-mate Kimi Raikkonen.

Title competitor Lewis Hamilton was again out-qualified by his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas, who starts third. The champions’ Mercedes run of 18 consecutive pole positions ended; Renault’s Jolyon Palmer crashes out at the end of Q1.

2017 Russian GP recorded, 47th career pole for four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel:

“I had a good start to the session and I was feeling reasonably comfortable. I lost a bit of the rhythm a bit in Q2” Vettel said following the session

“Then in Q3 the first run was not really tidy, so I left it to the end, and I improved some time in the last sector. I knew that for now I’m ahead but then I immediately opened the radio ‘tell me about the others, tell me about the others!’

“When I got the message we got it I was over the moon. The car was phenomenal this afternoon.”

The Finn Raikkonen, who was in pole position for most of Q3, responds to taking second spot behind team mate Vettel:

“Obviously the aim is to be in front. I’m happier than previous qualifying, but obviously I think had all the tools to be in the front today, but 1,2 for the team isn’t bad.” Kimi said.

Red Bull ace Daniel Ricciardo proved the best of the rest to take fifth, but the Williams of Felipe Massa was able to split the Red Bulls and will start in sixth as a result, one place ahead of team-mate Max Verstappen.

Renault driver Nico Hulkenberg made eighth fastest ahead of Force India’s Sergio Perez and his team-mate Esteban Ocon completed the top 10.

McLaren speedy Fernando Alonso made 15th fastest, but his McLaren team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne, who qualified in 17th, will take a 15-place grid penalty after having to fit a fifth MGU-H and fifth turbocharger after Friday practice, with four changes to engine components the new limit for the 2017 season.

Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz finished in 11th place but will take a three-place grid penalty for causing an accident at the last race at Bahrain.

F1 rookie Lance Stroll in the Williams was in 12th in front of the second ahead of local hero Daniil Kvyat and the Haas F1’s Kevin Magnussen, Sauber F1 ace Pascal Wehrlein spun at the end of Q1 and finished in 18th, one place ahead of his team-mate Marcus Ericsson, while Haas F1’s Romain Grosjean, who struggling with brake issue, was in 20th place.


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