Qualy: Vettel ends Hamilton’s pole run

Sebastian Vettel put an end to Lewis Hamilton's bid to emulate Ayrton Senna as he stormed to pole on the streets of Singapore, the first time Merc failed to grab P1 this season.

On a Saturday where Hamilton was aiming to equal Senna's run of eight successive pole positions, the British racer was undone by Mercedes' lack of pace.

Instead it was Ferrari and Red Bull who came to the fore under the lights at the Marina Bay circuit.

Vettel, who topped the final practice session, posted a 1:44.305 on his first run in Q3 to edge Daniel Ricciardo by 0.302s. Kimi Raikkonen slotted into third place with Daniil Kvyat fourth.

Heading out for a second run with the entire top ten on brand new supersoft Pirellis, Vettel was flying. He was purple in the first second and purple in the second before crossing the line with a 1:43.885.

That secured him pole position by 0.543s over Ricciardo. Raikkonen held onto third and Kvyat fourth while Hamilton had to settle for fifth ahead of his team-mate Nico Rosberg.

Vettel's pole was Ferrari's first in the new V6 era.

Meanwhile Carlos Sainz was the only driver to hit the barriers during qualifying. He brushed the wall with his rear right which resulted in his front right hitting it hard.

That damaged the car and left debris but it was only a yellow flag.

McLaren failed to follow up on their FP3 promise with Fernando Alonso qualifying 12th while Jenson Button was P15.

At the back of the grid, rookie Alexander Rossi had been on course to outqualify Manor team-mate Will Stevens only for the Brit to beat him on his final flying lap.

They will line up 19th and 20th and both face five-place grid penalties for gearbox changes.

Times
1 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:43.885
2 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 1:44.428 0.543
3 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1:44.667 0.782
4 Daniil Kvyat Red Bull    1:44.745 0.860
5 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:45.300 1.415
6 Nico Rosberg Mercedes    1:45.415 1.530
7 Valtteri Bottas Williams 1:45.676 1.791
8 Max Verstappen Toro Rosso 1:45.798 1.913
9 Felipe Massa Williams 1:46.077 2.192
10 Romain Grosjean Lotus 1:46.413 2.528
11 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 1:46.305
12 Fernando Alonso McLaren 1:46.328
13 Sergio Perez Force India 1:46.385
14 Carlos Sainz Toro Rosso 1:46.894
15 Jenson Button McLaren 1:47.019
16 Felipe Nasr Sauber 1:46.965
17 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 1:47.088
18 Pastor Maldonado Lotus 1:47.323
19 Will Stevens Manor 1:51.021
20 Alexander Rossi Manor 1:51.523

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