Sebastian Vettel will start the Singapore Grand Prix from pole position after edging out Red Bull Formula 1 rival Max Verstappen in the final stage of qualifying on Saturday night.

Verstappen enjoyed an edge over the field through Q1 and Q2, only for Vettel to turn up the wick for the final stage of qualifying, taking provisional pole by one-tenth of a second ahead of his Red Bull rival after the opening run.

Verstappen was unable to improve with his final lap, but Vettel dug deep and found yet more time, eventually turning in a best lap of 1:39.491 to finish three-tenths of a second clear of the field.

The result marked Vettel's second pole position of the season, the first coming in Hungary, and was an important blow in his bid for a fifth world title.

Red Bull got two cars into the top three as Daniel Ricciardo finished P3 just behind Verstappen, while Kimi Raikkonen was fourth overall in the second Ferrari.

Mercedes struggled to keep up with either Ferrari or Red Bull throughout qualifying, ultimately finishing fifth and sixth with Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas respectively.

Nico Hulkenberg led Renault's charge in seventh ahead of the McLaren pair of Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne, both of whom ran well in Q3, while Carlos Sainz Jr. completed the top 10 for Toro Rosso.

Sainz's passage to Q3 came at the expense of the driver he will replace at Renault next year, Jolyon Palmer, who was left to settle for P11 overall.

Force India had a difficult qualifying as Sergio Perez took 12th, complaining about his tyres, while teammate Esteban Ocon was 14th behind Toro Rosso's Daniil Kvyat.

Romain Grosjean's ongoing brake struggles continued through qualifying in Singapore as he finished a lowly 15th, having run off-track on a number f occasions through the sessions. The Frenchman was followed by Haas teammate Kevin Magnussen, who was bumped out of qualifying at the first hurdle in P16.

Williams suffered a double Q1 drop-out, with Felipe Massa qualifying 17th after losing his first run following a puncture and Lance Stroll following in P18.

Pascal Wehrlein and Marcus Ericsson struggled once again for Sauber, taking 19th and 20th, with the latter also set to be hit with an empty grid penalty following a gearbox change.

The Singapore Grand Prix gets underway at 1pm BST on Sunday.


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