Published: Sun, September 17, 2017
Sports | By Brett Lawson

Stunning Sebastian Vettel grabs Singapore Grand Prix pole

Stunning Sebastian Vettel grabs Singapore Grand Prix pole

Verstappen made a hash of his final lap and Vettel lowered his time to 1:39.491, afterwards whooping and shouting to his team-mates in Italian as he celebrated pole.

"I think the final lap was not great but we were quite close so I'm pretty happy with that", said the Dutch driver, who turns 20 in two weeks' time.

The Red Bulls had appeared favourite for pole after topping every session in the build up to Q3 - only to see Vettel surge ahead when it mattered most.

Hamilton, who leads the German by three points with seven rounds remaining, qualified his Mercedes only fifth for Sunday's night race with team mate Valtteri Bottas set to start alongside in sixth.

Ricciardo suggested Red Bull could dominate the Singapore GP after his strong showing on Friday and still expects victory in Sunday's race, despite only qualifying third. "I knew we would come here with a good auto", Ricciardo said.

"We knew that we would come here and it would be hard", Hamilton said. "I've just got to try and keep the pressure on the guys in front without cooking my vehicle, if I can".

Asked if he could take comfort from the fact Singapore is likely to be Mercedes worst circuit in the title run-in, he said: "I don't know where Ferrari has picked up that pace".

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As expected, Mercedes struggled to replicate its usual performance levels throughout qualifying in Singapore, which started with Red Bull seemingly in control.

"You always go for it if there is a gap and if it's possible, but if not then you just settle down and get into the race".

"Today I will accept a little bit of defeat but tomorrrow I am still confident we will get victory".

Hamilton, who took a record 69th career pole at Monza by a huge margin, never looked in contention. Red Bull seem like they're very strong and they're thereabouts with Ferrari, so we've got some work to do.

"I got everything I could out of the vehicle, everything and more", he added.

"I don't know where Ferrari have picked up that pace", he added.

The other McLaren of Stoffel Vandoorne was ninth while Carlos Sainz of Toro Rosso-Renault - who will switch to Honda power next year and Sainz will join Hulkenberg at Renault - completed the top ten.

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