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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 October 2018

Lewis Hamilton beats Mercedes-GP teammate Valtteri Bottas to take French GP pole

Championship leader Sebastian Vettel has to settle for third at Paul Ricard, ahead of the Red Bulls of Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo

Lewis Hamilton is on pole at the French Grand Prix. Boris Horvat / AFP
Lewis Hamilton is on pole at the French Grand Prix. Boris Horvat / AFP

Lewis Hamilton took the 75th pole position of his career as Mercedes-GP continued their impressive form at the French Grand Prix.

The four-time world champion's lap of 1 minute, 30.029 seconds around Paul Ricard was enough to edge out teammate Valtteri Bottas to ensure he starts from the front in Sunday's race.

Hamilton had topped the times in both of Friday's practice sessions, and then Bottas had been quickest in Saturday's final practice, which was hit by a rain storm.

If Hamilton is successful in Sunday's race, which starts at 6.10pm UAE time he will regain the championship lead from Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel, who starts third.

Vettel, who won in Canada two weeks ago, has an one-point lead over his fellow four-time world champion.

The Red Bull Racing cars of Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo were fourth and fifth, with the second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen in sixth.

Charles Leclerc, who has been linked with a move to Ferrari for 2019, was an impressive eighth in his Sauber, while Romain Grosjean will start his home race from 10th place despite the Haas driver crashing out in the final part of qualifying.

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