Vettel takes Canadian GP pole with lap record

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Forty years after Gilles won his Grand Prix here, I think it's great to show that Ferrari's still alive, winning races. From the number of red flags with the prancing pony logo, the Italian squad remains the clear favourite in the grandstands.

It was also the 50th career victory for the 30-year-old, who was a four-time Formula One champion in his days at Red Bull Renault. I think we had the right strategy and the right tire, so we could stay out and control the race a little bit from there, keep the gap stable to Valtteri. You can see there's a lot of flags. Both of the harder compounds on offer experienced minimal degradation on Friday, while the hyper-soft - the softest compound in Pirelli's range - had observed degradation of 0.2s per lap - a significant amount given that it only offers a 0.5s per lap performance benefit in race pace.

Going into the weekend, Mercedes-AMG's Lewis Hamilton leads the 2018 Drivers' Championship with 110 points.

"They've been waiting long enough for Ferrari to win here", Vettel said.

The Finn added: "It's always annoying when it's so close and we're not ahead - but starting on the front row is good for this race".

Lance Stroll of Montreal, the first Canadian to race in F1 since Jacques Villeneuve left in 2006, qualified 17th as his Williams team's struggles continued. It's a three-way fight, six cars can win races and you can't take anything for granted. The Briton has won the last three on the track that seems to suit the Mercedes vehicle with its heavy braking after long straightaways and tight chicanes. "I am very happy with this weekend so far".

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Hamilton's chief championship rival, Sebastian Vettel, finished fifth.

Stevenage-born Hamilton had earlier cruised into Q2 after taking P3 behind the Ferraris in the first phase of qualifying.

Australian Daniel Ricciardo, victorious in Monaco two weeks ago, was sixth in the second Red Bull as his team-mate Verstappen, who had been fastest throughout practice, continued to deliver a flawless riposte to his critics. "But it showed in Monaco that we have a great vehicle".

Kimi Raikkonen in the other Ferrari and Monaco victor Daniel Ricciardo are in the third row.

Vettel was well aware of the many Prancing Pony flags in the packed grandstands at Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve as he kept the lead from pole position and coasted to victory on Sunday.