Spaniard Fernando Alonso handed Ferrari their first Formula One pole since 2010 in a wet British Grand Prix qualifying session on Saturday.
The championship leader, last year's winner at Silverstone, was joined on the front row by Red Bull's Australian Mark Webber - also his closest rival in the standings after eight of 20 races.The pole was Ferrari's first since Alonso started the Singapore Grand Prix from the top slot on the grid in September 2010, 31 races ago. The former double world champion was, however, wary of the insignificance of pole position at Silverstone as only four of the drivers who took pole at the race track have gone on to win the race in the last 17 years.
Seven times world champion Michael Schumacher qualified third fastest for Mercedes with fellow German Sebastian Vettel, the reigning champion, alongside for Red Bull. Schumacher's marked improvement in qualifying this season continued as he set a top three time in qualifying for the third time this year. It also marked an improvement in his head to head record against teammate Nico Rosberg. Schumacher has now qualified Rosberg four times in the nine qualifying sessions this year.
Heavy rain had earlier forced qualifying to be halted for an hour and a half.
Sebastian Vettel, Felipe Massa, Kimi Raikkonen, Pastor Maldonado, Lewis Hamilton, Nico Hulkenberg and Romain Grosjean completed the top ten on the starting order.
Of these, Maldonado will have to take a five-place grid penalty as a result of his collision with Lewis Hamilton in the closing stages of the previous race in Valencia.