Vettel wins canada pole – hamilton only fourth

Vettel wins canada pole - hamilton only fourth

On the special track of his rival lewis hamilton in montreal, sebastian vettel took pole position for the first time in five years. The four-time formula 1 world champion secured the best starting spot in the ferrari for the canadian grand prix on sunday.

"Yesterday we still had a few difficulties. I wasn’t really happy with the car," said the driver from heppenheim, recalling the difficult start to the weekend. "Today the car was incredible. I could have gone even faster if I had not had a small mistake."

But even so, it was enough for the 30-year-old to take the top spot on the grid. In a record time of 1:10.764 minutes for the 4.361-kilometer circuit gilles villeneuve, he relegated mercedes driver valtteri bottas from finland to second place by 0.093 seconds.

Dutchman max verstappen in the red bull finished third ahead of world championship leader and six-time canada winner hamilton in the second mercedes. Nico hulkenberg finished a good seventh in the renault behind kimi raikkonen in the second ferrari and daniel ricciardo in the second red bull.

For vettel it was the fourth pole this season and the 54th in total. His career. His only victory to date was in montreal, and he also won his last canadian pole in 2013. Before the seventh of 21 races of the season, hamilton leads the overall standings with 110 points, ahead of vettel (96) and the australian ricciardo (72). The briton can equal record winner michael schumacher, who has topped the podium seven times in canada, if he succeeds on sunday.

But vettel wants to prevent this out of his own interest. He’s been waiting two months for a win. The improved engine should also help him. Rival hamilton, meanwhile, will have to wait for engine modifications and performance enhancements until the next race in two weeks’ time in france.

Nevertheless, vettel is sure: "it will be very close between us, mercedes and red bull."This was also shown by the qualifying result: the gap between vettel and sixth-placed ricciardo was just 0.352 seconds.

The day had already begun well for the german. In the final practice session two hours before the elimination race, vettel showed a strong improvement compared to the two practice sessions on friday with fourth and fifth place finishes. On saturday morning he was second, just behind verstappen, who had also been fastest the day before.

However, pole position on the gilles villeneuve circuit is nowhere near as important as it is on the narrow track in monaco, for example. In the 17 races in montreal since 2000 – the grand prix was cancelled in 2009 – only eight drivers from pole position have also won the grand prix. The long straights in particular offer enough overtaking opportunities on the ile notre-dame. Vettel will not feel too safe.

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