Six times Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton put Mercedes on pole position for the first ever Styrian Grand Prix at Austria’s Red Bull Ring on Saturday.
The Briton, who dominated a lively qualifying session delayed by heavy rain, will be joined on the front row by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen for Sunday’s second race of the season.
In a session that started 46 minutes late due to heavy rain that washed out final practice, the Briton powered through the spray in a time 1.2 seconds quicker than Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.
McLaren’s Spaniard Carlos Sainz will line up third, with Hamilton‘s Finnish team mate Valtteri Bottas — winner of the season-opener at the same circuit last weekend — fourth fastest.
“What a tricky day,” said the Briton after his stunning performance.
“The weather was incredibly difficult out there for all of us. A lot of the time you couldn’t even see where you were going…I love these days.”
The battle was between Hamilton and Verstappen, with the Dutch 22-year-old going fastest two minutes from the end but the champion slapping him down again with a final effort of one minute 19.273 seconds.
Verstappen then lost control on his final flying effort, sliding wide.