MANAMA: Finland’s Valtteri Bottas claimed a first career pole position on Saturday when he edged out Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton in qualifying at the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, who won the season-opener in Australia, was third-fastest.
“Congrats Valtteri Bottas 1st pole! Great lap. Happy for all you guys at merc that Valtteri is going well,” tweeted Nico Rosberg, whose decision to quit after winning the 2016 world title opened up a Mercedes vacancy for Bottas for this season.
The Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo was fourth-fastest while the third row on the grid in Sunday’s race will feature Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen and Max Verstappen in the second Red Bull.