Sebastian Vettel proved the form that has him as the current championship leader, by bringing in pole position with 1:16.276 while his team mate Kimi Raikkonen managed second with a time just off by 0.168 seconds.

The competition however remains strong as Valtteri Bottas lead a rather off-form Lewis Hamilton to lead the second row, with a time just two hundredths of a second over Vettel.

And the third row of the starting grid is just as interesting with the two Red Bulls, Daniel Ricciardo leading Max Verstappen. Nico Hulkenberg managed a seventh but will drop five places on the grid because of a gearbox change.

Meanwhile Toro Rosso’s Kvyat has also earned a three place penalty (from 13th to 16th) for impeding Lance Stroll. 

“The Stewards determined that Kvyat was on an exceptionally slow lap having spun earlier and damaged his tyres,” read an official statement.

“The Stewards acknowledged that he was warned by the team very late of the approach of Stroll who was on a fast lap. Further, Kvyat pulled as far to the right as he could as soon as he saw Stroll. However, the Stewards considered that these were not mitigating factors. The Russian was also awarded one penalty point on his licence for the misdemeanour, bringing his total for the 12 month period to 10 points – two points short of the tally which triggers an automatic one-race ban.

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