Montreal: Sebastian Vettel handed Ferrari their first Canadian Grand Prix pole position since Michael Schumacher in 2001 Saturday while Formula One championship leader Lewis Hamilton qualified fourth for Mercedes.
Vettel, 14 points behind the Briton, will start from the front for the fourth time at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve after setting a track record of one minute 10.764 seconds on a sunny afternoon.
Hamilton had been hoping for a record seventh Canadian Grand Prix pole, at the track where he took his first win in 2007, but instead was out-qualified by Finnish teammate Valtteri Bottas, who joined Vettel on the front row.
The top four all lapped inside the one minute 11 seconds mark. “I got the job done. We were a bit in trouble Friday. I wasn’t really happy with the car, we had some problems and I just couldn’t get the rhythm,” said Vettel.
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, who could have become the youngest driver ever to take pole, dominated all three practice sessions but the 20-year-old could not keep pace with the Ferraris when it mattered most.
Hamilton will still be chasing a fourth consecutive win in Montreal to equal Schumacher’s mark of seven victories at an island circuit named after Canada’s late Ferrari great.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen qualified fifth fastest and will be joined on the third row by Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo, winner in Monaco two weeks ago and the last man to beat Hamilton to victory in Canada.