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Lewis Hamilton wins German Grand Prix pole as Ferrari implode with mechanical issues

Lewis Hamilton took pole position for the German Grand Prix with a helping hand from Ferrari.

The five-time world champion, who had been feeling unwell going into qualifying at Hockenheim, set the fastest time despite struggling for pace through practice.

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen qualified second and Mercedes No 2 Valtteri Bottas third.

‘You never cease to amaze us,’ Mercedes boss Toto Wolff told Hamilton.

The Briton is now aiming to win this race for the fifth time, an achievement that would lift him ahead of Michael Schumacher, a hero beyond measure in these parts.

His supposed heir Sebastian Vettel’s hopes of winning his home race took a beating without him even turning the wheel.

An engine problem caused him to climb out of the cockpit as his mechanics toiled unavailingly to mend the problem before time ran out.

He will start in the pit lane, meaning he will stay clear of any early skirmishes and has the opportunity to carve his way through the field – even if victory is a remote chance.

Already 100 points behind Hamilton after 10 of the season’s 21 rounds, the turbo malfunction is just one of many setbacks Vettel has endured during the most frustrating year of his career. He has not won since the Belgian Grand Prix last year.

GERMAN GP QUALIFYING

POLE POSITION SHOOTOUT

1 Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes 1:11.767

2 Verstappen (Hol) Red Bull 1:12.113

3 Bottas (Fin) Mercedes 1:12.129

4 Gasly (Fra) Red Bull 1:12.180

5 Raikkonen (Fin) Alfa Romeo 1:12.538

6 Grosjean (Fra) Haas 1:12.851

7 Sainz (Spa) McLaren 1:12.897

8 Perez (Mex) Racing Point 1:13.065

9 Hulkenberg (Ger) Renault 1:13.126

10 Leclerc (Mon) Ferrari No Time Set

ELIMINATED Q2

11 Giovinazzi (Ita) Alfa Romeo 1:12.786

12 Magnussen (Den) Haas 1:12.789

13 Ricciardo (Aus) Renault 1:12.799

14 Kvyat (Rus) Toro Rosso 1:13.135

15 Stroll (Can) Racing Point 1:13.450

ELIMINATED Q1

16 Norris (Gbr) McLaren 1:13.333

17 Albon (Tha) Toro Rosso 1:13.461

18 Russell (Gbr) Williams 1:14.721

19 Kubica (Pol) Williams 1:14.839

20 Vettel (Ger) Ferrari No Time Set

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