Silverstone: Lewis Hamilton seized pole position on home soil, much to the delight of his cheering fans, by narrowly beating teammate Nico Rosberg in qualifying for today's British Grand Prix.
A fan takes a selfie with Lewis Hamilton after he clinches pole position at the British Grand Prix qualifying in Silverstone on Saturday. Pic/AFP
Hamilton lapped the 5.8 kilometer-long Silverstone circuit in one minute 32.248 seconds to take his 46th career pole, beating Rosberg by just a tenth of a second. Williams driver Felipe Massa was third.
Hamilton now stands third in the all-time list of drivers with the most pole positions, moving clear of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel and trailing only seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher and late triple champion Ayrton Senna.
"It's a special day, it's special when you get the pole position here on your home turf and you see all those fans out there," Hamilton, gunning for a third home victory today in front of an expected record crowd of 140,000 fans, said after qualifying.
"So many people have come today and this weekend and they really do motivate me through the weekend so it's particularly special when you do get the pole."
Hamilton heads into the weekend leading the championship standings by 10 points from Rosberg. But his early-season dominance has waned with the resurgent German having won three of the last four races.
He has generally struggled to match Rosberg this weekend at Silverstone and trailed the 30-year-old for most of the qualifying hour, only moving into provisional pole with his first flying lap in the final phase of qualifying.
And while Hamilton failed to improve on his second outing, Rosberg, struggling for grip, was also unable to beat his benchmark, handing pole to the Briton. "The first lap was really good so there's not much to say about that Lewis was just one tenth quicker, which is annoying," Rosberg said.