Lewis Hamilton will start Sunday’s Monaco Grand prix from pole position after leading Mercedes to a front row lockout in qualifying as a mistake from Ferrari saw home favourite Charles Leclerc drop out in Q1.

Hamilton managed to grab his second Monaco pole after edging out Bottas by just 0.086 seconds in Q3, improving on his final lap after an error on his first run left him trailing his teammate.

Hamilton’s time of 1m10.166s marks a new track record in Monaco, with the Briton calling the lap “beautiful” after the session.

Bottas took second for Mercedes ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, who was the only real threat to Mercedes in qualifying as Ferrari floundered.

Sebastian Vettel was almost eliminated in Q1 after touching the wall exiting Swimming Pool while on a quick lap, forcing him to come into the pits and take a fresh set of tyres for one final push.

While Vettel was able to hoist himself out of trouble and set the fastest time of the session, he did so at the expense of teammate Leclerc, who Ferrari had opted to keep in the pits despite with the track improving and lots of drivers finding time.

Leclerc was left shaking his head at the back of the Ferrari garage before speaking sharply to the engineers, resigned to starting his home race from 16th on the grid.

Vettel made another mistake in the final stage of qualifying, touching the wall exiting Tabac to leave him fourth overall, two-tenths off Verstappen’s time in P3.

Pierre Gasly recorded his best qualifying result of the year, finishing fifth for Red Bull ahead of Kevin Magnussen, who secured a place on the third row of the grid for Haas in sixth.

2018 Monaco pole-sitter Daniel Ricciardo could not replicate his charge from a year ago, but nevertheless impressed for Renault to reach Q3 and qualify seventh, matching his best Saturday display of the year. Teammate Nico Hulkenberg was bumped out in Q2 by just six-hundredths of a second, leaving him 11th.

Toro Rosso got both of its cars through to Q3 as Daniil Kvyat and Alexander Albon finished P8 and P10 respectively, split by McLaren’s Carlos Sainz Jr.

Lando Norris took 12th in his first Monaco qualifying after failing to match teammate Sainz’s pace, while Romain Grosjean was left frustrated in 13th for Haas after encountering a dawdling Gasly on his final Q2 lap, with the Red Bull driver under investigation for the incident.

Alfa Romeo drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi went slower in Q2 than in Q1, meaning they finished P14 and P15 respectively.

Racing Point’s weekend-long struggles in Monaco continued as both Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll were eliminated in 17th and 18th, although Perez did maintain his 100 percent qualifying record over his teammate this year, finishing half a second quicker.

George Russell managed to win the intra-team battle at Williams for the sixth race in a row, qualifying Robert Kubica by 0.3 seconds as they once again occupied the final row of the grid.

 

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