British Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton clinches pole ahead of Kimi Raikkonen in rain-affected qualifiers

Silverstone: Lewis Hamilton stormed to a provisional fifth Silverstone pole of his career after a dazzling performance during a rain-affected qualifying session on Saturday for the British Grand Prix.

The Briton thrilled home fans with a devastating quickest lap of 1 minutes 26.600sec to finish 0.547sec clear of Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen, although Hamilton was under investigation for potential impeding.

Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen of Finland, Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain and Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany, from left to right, wave to fans after the qualifying session for the British Formula One Grand Prix at the Silverstone racetrack in Silverstone, England, Saturday, July 15, 2017. The British Formula One Grand Prix will be held on Sunday, July 16. Hamilton clocked the fastest time, Raikkonen was second and Vettel third. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Kimi Raikkonen, Lewis Hamilton andSebastian Vettel of Germany after the qualifying session at Silverstone. AP

Championship leader Sebastian Vettel was left frustrated in third in the second Ferrari ahead of Valtteri Bottas in the second Mercedes.

Bottas, however, faces a likely five-place grid penalty for an unscheduled gearbox change, while stewards were looking into an incident in which Romain Grosjean claimed he was blocked by Hamilton.

Max Verstappen was fifth for Red Bull ahead of Nico Hulkenberg of Renault, Sergio Perez and his Force India team-mate Esteban Ocon.

Stoffel Vandoorne took an encouraging ninth for McLaren ahead of Grosjean of Haas.

"You always try to save the best till last," said Hamilton, who closed to within one of Michael Schumacher's record of 68 poles. "I felt very comfortable in these conditions – they are the conditions we grew up racing in here in England."

"It felt ok, but the conditions were not easy, changing a lot," said Raikkonen. "The car felt the best it had this weekend, but not quite fast enough for first place."

Vettel said: "The car came alive this morning and that was really good. It’s a shame there that in the last run in Q3 there was not more time!"

Published Date: Jul 15, 2017 19:32 PM | Updated Date: Jul 15, 2017 19:32 PM

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