Lewis Hamilton storms to record British GP pole

Jennie Gow's qualifying predictions

Jennie Gow's qualifying predictions

Hamilton was in a league of his own in qualifying as he claimed pole position by 0.5s over Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen in another sensational qualifying lap similar to that of in Canada and Baku where he claimed top spot by similar margins.

The outcome was that Vettel's lead in the championship was cut to one point.

"We have the best fans here". Obviously the fact that I ran out of tyres and it blows up, that's something nobody could have seen.

And when he stood atop the podium, joined in his moment of triumph by his old team-mate and sparring partner Jenson Button, he added: "Look how happy these people are!" All l do know is that I am loving racing and I really, really do feel within myself that I am driving better than ever.

"When I was in the garage I could see him in my mirror".

Even off the track this weekend, Hamilton has been in control.

"It was clear we were faster, we got him in the pitstop".

Vettel and Verstappen were locked in a fierce battle for third place during the first stint of Sunday's race, with both drivers taking it in turns to run the other out wide at Stowe and Club.

"Valtteri has done an outstanding race by going up from the ninth starting position to finish second". Where he might have expected anyone else to roll over, Vettel found a blue, red and yellow vehicle where he had been anticipating empty space, and had to back off.

While Raikkonen's tyre tread came apart with two laps to go, Vettel suffered a complete failure one lap later. Bottas was on the fly having ditched his soft tyres for super-softs', fighting his way back behind Vettel.

Since joining Mercedes, Bottas has scored two race victories and is now 22 points behind teammate Lewis Hamilton in the drivers' standings.

But as the race on Sunday reminded us in the closing stages, there are plenty of variables that can throw a spanner in the works, not least, tyres. That left Hamilton and Bottas to finish first and second, and Raikkonen to mop up with a distant third, Vettel slumped to seventh, behind Verstappen, Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg, and thus saw his 20-point lead wiped out.

"I was very, very fortunate firstly that the team did an exceptional job this weekend", he told reporters after a delay for him to "crowd surf" with his fans in a packed sold out crowd at Silverstone. "The vehicle felt great, the strategy was flawless, and Valtteri did an exceptional job to come back from eighth".

"We are a winning team and we can't change any components of it".

"I got a good start and then, after that, I was really able to manage the gap to Kimi", explained Hamilton. The plan was to stop on lap 19 and we extended that quite a bit, to lap 25. I dreamed of driving a formula 1, but I thought I would never be able to win five Grand Prix in my home country. I will always want to win more even when I do stop.

"After the race in Budapest I will think about it some more on the beach", Wolff smiled.

"I just meant that in life you don't know what is going to happen". The amount of crowd support I've had, the energy from my friend Billy Monger [the teenager who lost his legs in April in a racing accident], the Great Ormond Street Hospital kids, the Starlight kids, and my new friend Michael who is suffering from cancer and came down from South Africa...

But Vettel commented: "I don't think anyone is particularly to blame".

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