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2018 F1

Hamilton grabs Spanish pole, Mercedes front row

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Championship leader Lewis Hamilton ended Ferrari’s single-lap pace domination by took pole position for the Spanish Grand Prix, while his rival Sebastian Vettel had to settle for third.

The Brit made his first pole position since the opening race of the season ahead of his team-mate Valtteri Bottas.

Following a poor Q3 first attempt by both Ferrari drivers, Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen improved in the final flying lap to made third and fourth.

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo secured the third row. Local hero Fernando Alonso entered into Q3 with renovated McLaren for the first time this season, eighth behind Kevin Magnussen of Haas F1.

Lewis Hamilton: “Very close in qualifying but very happy. I needed this pole, I’ve not had one for a while.”

Valtteri Bottas: “It was so close today like it’s been all weekend. Good fun. I ruined my first run in Q3 so I had only one chance in the final lap.

“It’s a shame it’s only four hundredths but the race is tomorrow. For the team it’s a perfect result.

“We will race hard and we will try to get the 1-2 we deserved in Baku.”

Sebastian Vettel: “I was happy with the lap. The first run in Q3 was not so good, I locked up into the first corner.

“The last lap I was happy. I was feeling good until the end. I looked at the tower and saw that my name didn’t go to the top, so not entirely happy.

“We expected Mercedes to be very strong so tomorrow should be an interesting race.”

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