Hamilton vows to give Vettel blues

Track Torque: Hamilton unbeatable at Spa

Track Torque: Hamilton unbeatable at Spa

Hamilton however, will be joined on the front row by the Canadian teenager Lance Stroll with both Verstappen and Ricciardo to serve grid drops following engine penalties.

Bottas let his quick form slip after such a good day for him as the rain began to fall again, and Hamilton snatched it - becoming an all-time record holder with his 69th career pole position.

"And then to be there many years later, we are and I am living proof that dreams are something that can come true".

Valtteri Bottas insists it is too soon to give up on his own title ambitions to back Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton's push for the drivers' championship. He is now the leader of an exalted group of drivers holding one of the sport's greatest achievements.

The Italian and British Grands Prix are the only ones to have featured every year since the championship started in 1950.

Hamilton was characteristically emotional at the result.

"I'm happy but I know the difficulties that lie ahead and I have to try and figure out how to apply positive energy to my guys to bring more magic". "Growing up watching TV and watching Michael stand up there and now you're standing up there". It's hard to say something about the performance; it's only the first free practice, lap times don't mean much and we don't know what other people are doing.

It's also the fourth straight year that Hamilton will start first in Monza and it was his sixth pole overall on the track, breaking another record held by Senna and Juan Manuel Fangio.

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For much of the session the Red Bull drivers looked as though they would set the fastest times, but in the final moments Hamilton put on a fresh set of full-wets to set a remarkable lap, 1.148s clear of Verstappen's best effort. Dry weather is expected so he has every opportunity to take advantage.

"I'm that surprised by how quick the others went", Vettel said. At this stage we don't know why.

"We're a paying customer and it's obviously below par - the service that we're seeing at this point in time, because of the reliability issues". Behind them, however, others had also been making the best of the conditions and they have reaped the rewards.

The 36-year-old Massa changed his retirement plans to return with Williams this season.

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Having looked competitive all weekend, Ferrari was unable to match the likes of Mercedes, Red Bull and even Williams and Force India as Vettel finished Q3 in eighth place, one position behind teammate Kimi Raikkonen.

The Briton acknowledged their achievement. So I think it's really cool for young kids to be watching today. It was an epic day, I feel truly blessed. "There is no rush, and I still have another year, so we still have a lot of time", he added.