Sunday Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - Sport - BY MATT MALTBY

SE­BAS­TIAN VET­TEL pro­duced a mag­nif­i­cent last-gasp ef­fort to snatch pole away from Lewis Hamil­ton for the Cana­dian Grand Prix.

Reign­ing world cham­pion Hamil­ton was on course to start to­day’s race at the very front of the grid but Vet­tel had other ideas.

The Ger­man (above) has en­dured a mis­er­able sea­son so far but he de­liv­ered his first pole of the year with a po­ten­tially sea­son-chang­ing qual­i­fy­ing per­for­mance.

It was also a good day for Vet­tel’s Fer­rari team-mate Charles Le­clerc af­ter the young­ster came home third ahead of Re­nault’s Daniel Ric­cia­rdo.

Mercedes were sur­pris­ingly off the pace as Valt­teri Bot­tas could only put his car in sixth be­hind Red Bull’s Pierre Gasly. The Sil­ver Ar­rows have a new en­gine at the Cir­cuit Gilles Vil­leneuve and their ri­vals would have feared the worst ahead of qual­i­fy­ing.

But Fer­rari’s straight-line speed ad­van­tage also put them in a strong po­si­tion to fight for pole, and they de­liv­ered the goods.

The Ital­ians have strug­gled to con­tend with Mercedes this sea­son, but Vet­tel’s ex­ploits will give them hope.

The un­der-per­form­ing Scud­e­ria have not won a race this sea­son, while Vet­tel is with­out a vic­tory since last Au­gust’s Bel­gian GP.

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