Hamilton takes pole position for British GP ahead of Rosberg

Qualifying was a reversal from Friday’s practice sessions when Rosberg outpaced his fellow 30-year-old

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Formula One championship leader Lewis Hamilton will start from pole position for the eighth time in nine races this season as he chases a third British Grand Prix triumph on Sunday.

The British defending champion, who clocked 1 minute, 32.248 seconds in qualifying on Saturday, will share the front row of the grid with Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg for the seventh time this year.

In windy conditions in central England, there was only a tenth of a second between the pair, who are separated by 10 points at the top of the drivers’ standings.

“It’s special when you get pole position here on your home turf and when you see all the fans out there,” said Hamilton, who has won at Silverstone in both of his championship-winning seasons.

Qualifying was a reversal from Friday’s practice sessions when Rosberg outpaced his fellow 30-year-old.

“There was something wrong on my left front,” Rosberg said. “We need to look at what it was.”

Mercedes team chief Toto Wolff said the engineers resolved a “setup mishap” overnight for Hamilton.

“Generally it’s not been the smoothest of weekends it’s been a bit up and down in terms of setup, balance and getting laps,” Hamilton said.

“I made a change in the car going into qualifying which was perhaps not spectacular for a qualifying lap but hopefully we will be good for the race.”

Behind the Mercedes duo, Williams locked out the second row, with Felipe Massa ahead of Valtteri Bottas.

But there was more misery for McLaren. Jenson Button, the 2009 world champion still searching for a triumph at his home race, was eliminated in the first round of qualifying along with Fernando Alonso, who qualified only one place higher in 17th.

“We’re used to being at the front fighting for wins so it’s tough for the team,” said Button, who qualified in third last year. “You hope for more at your home grand prix.”