Hamilton claims pole position for Mexican GP

Mexico City: English Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton secured pole position for Sunday’s Mexican Grand Prix, beating German teammate and Formula One drivers’ championship standings leader Nico Rosberg for the top spot on the grid.

Hamilton, the two-time defending F1 drivers’ champion, snagged pole position for the 59th time in his career, leaving him just nine short of German legend Michael Schumacher’s record, Efe news reported.

Hamilton posted a time of 1:18.704 in Saturday’s third and final round of qualifying at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City, while Rosberg had the second-best lap time of 1:18.958.

Rosberg leads the drivers’ championship standings with 331 points with three races to go in the 2016 F1 season, while the second-place Hamilton is 26 points behind.

Red Bull drivers Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Daniel Ricciardo of Australia, who is third in the standings but far out of contention, will start on the second row.

Spanish drivers Carlos Sainz Jr. (Toro Rosso) and Fernando Alonso (McLaren) will start 10th and 11th, respectively, on Sunday.