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Circuit Gilles Villeneuve... Gilles is huge for Ferrari and Canada is linked to that name.

Verstappen, who started from the rear of the grid at the Monaco Grand Prix after a crash in final practice, offered the promise of something much better in Montreal, taking full advantage of an upgraded power unit to put down two polished performances on the 2.7 mile (4.34 km) sun-splashed Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

The Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas will also start in the front row.

Australian Daniel Ricciardo, victorious in Monaco two weeks ago, was sixth in the second Red Bull as his team-mate Verstappen, who had been fastest throughout practice, continued to deliver a ideal riposte to his critics.

He said: "We were good on the hypersofts in Monaco and it gives us a chance to do well again this weekend".

Verstappen's decision-making has been challenged following crashes at Baku, when he and Ricciardo took each other out of contention for the podium, and at Monaco, when the Dutchman missed qualifying after crashing at the end of the third practice session. The auto all weekend has been really strong, every session we made progress with the vehicle and I'm feeling confident on the track. "I quickly saw that it was going to be hard to take pole position but you always do your best and try to get the best out of the auto".

Hamilton will start from behind the front-row in Montreal for the first time in seven years.

"But today we switched on". "The vehicle was working well".

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With how close the top three teams are, Hamilton believes it could be a tough race to overtake but is aiming to do all he can to clinch a seventh race victory in Montreal which would tie him with the legendary Michael Schumacher.

In a relaxed but revealing interview conducted while playing Vettel's favourite board game, backgammon, for Sky Sports F1's exclusively live coverage of Sunday's Canadian GP, the four-time world champion talks to Ted Kravitz about his life on and away from the race track, plus what his future beyond F1 could eventually hold.

Charles Leclerc also impressed in P13 for Sauber, the fourth consecutive race the Monegasque has made it two Q2 and he out-paced both McLaren's with Fernando Alonso 14th just ahead of teammate Stoffel Vandoorne.

Verstappen has failed to finish in two of the six races this season with a best result of third in Spain last month.

"It was just a hard session".

"Obviously if something happened in practice, we'd probably have to take one". So I am just focusing on what is ahead, and I am confident that I can turn things around.

After a miserable Friday blighted by setbacks, Renault was back on form on Saturday as Nico Hulkenberg produced an excellent lap to go sub-1m12 and lead the midfield runners in P7.

"The vehicle was incredible in qualifying and it just kept getting quicker", said Vettel, whose Ferrari team were using new engines.


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