SILVERSTONE -- Lewis Hamilton secured pole position at the British Grand Prix after a dominant display at Silverstone saw him set the fastest lap time by 0.547s in qualifying.
No one could rival the Mercedes driver's 1:26.600 as he beat the previous qualifying record by over 1.5s and held a healthy margin over the Ferrari drivers in second and third.
But as remarkable as Hamilton's performance was, it also came under investigation after he impeded Romain Grosjean during the Frenchman's quick lap in Q3. Grosjean immediately complained on the radio and his engineer responded saying he lost 0.3s by getting stuck behind the Mercedes. Moments later a message popped up on the timing screens saying the incident would be investigated by the stewards after the session, although Hamilton said he had no warning from his team on the radio and felt he was far enough clear of the Haas to get away with it. Thirty minutes after the conclusion of qualifying, the stewards confirmed no further action would be taken against the three-time world champion, meaning he holds on to pole position for Sunday's race.
On his quick lap, Hamilton hooked up three fastest sectors that left championship leader Sebastian Vettel 0.756s adrift in third. Vettel complained of traffic following his quick lap and lost the majority of his time to teammate Kimi Raikkonen in the second sector, allowing Raikkonen to secure his third front row grid slot of the season in second.
Valtteri Bottas was fourth fastest, 0.776s off his Mercedes teammate, but will start ninth once a five-place grid penalty for an unscheduled gearbox change is applied. He opted to use the the more durable soft compound in the second session of qualifying, meaning he will start the race on that tyre on Sunday while all the others in the top ten will start on the super-soft.
Red Bull's Max Verstappen took fifth, over one and a half seconds off Hamilton, ahead of an impressive lap from Nico Hulkenberg in the Renault, who looked quick throughout all three sessions. Sergio Perez secured seventh for Force India ahead of teammate Esteban Ocon, the McLaren of Stoffel Vandoorne and Grosjean's impeded Haas.
Briton Jolyon Palmer was knocked out in Q2 after missing out a place in the top-ten shootout by just 0.088s to Vandoorne. Daniil Kvyat was 12th fastest ahead of Fernando Alonso, who qualified 13th but will drop to last on the grid once his 30-place engine penalty has been applied. Carlos Sainz was 14th fastest ahead of Felipe Massa, who complained of traffic on his quick lap and had to settle for 15th.
Lance Stroll was knocked out in the final minutes of Q1 as Alonso bolted on a set of super-soft tyres at the end of a drying session and rocketed up to the top of the timesheets to P1. Stroll had been out on intermediate tyres throughout the session and his best effort ended up 0.531s shy of a place in Q2 when the chequered flag fell. He will move up one place to 15th on the grid when Alonso's 30-place grid penalty is applied while Kevin Magnussen will move up to 16th, Pascal Wehrlein to 17th and Marcus Ericsson to 18th.
Daniel Ricciardo finished the session dead last after a suspected turbo issue saw him pull up midway through the Q1. He had been leading the session up until that point, but the drying conditions meant he was 0.3s adrift of Ericsson by the end. Despite having a gearbox penalty, he will move up to 19th once Alonso's larger engine penalty is applied.