Sebastian Vettel delighted his home crowd by snatching pole position at the German Grand Prix on Saturday, his success made even sweeter by Lewis Hamilton's hydraulic problems.
Vettel turned on the style in Q3 at Hockenheim, immediately going three tenths faster than Ferrari team-mate Kimi Raikkonen before smashing the lap record.
His final lap of 1:11.212 denied Valtteri Bottas top spot, a feat that would have slightly lessened the blow Mercedes suffered at the end of Q1.
That saw Hamilton bow out at Turn 10, the Briton having taken a very wide line two corners earlier that appeared to cause the issue.
Hamilton will start Sunday's race from 14th as a result, handing Vettel the advantage in the championship battle – the German already leading his rival by eight points.
"It's been a tough day, but these things happen in sport. This is a part of racing," said a dejected Hamilton.
"When you're fighting for a championship that's as close as this you can't afford days like this. You put so much preparation in, everyone works so hard, and then to go out early in qualifying is a bit of a shock.
"Your heart sinks and sometimes you just can't believe things unfold the way they do, but all you can do is suck it up."
Bottas joins Vettel on the front row so could give his team-mate some support, while Vettel has Kimi Raikkonen to keep the other Mercedes in check.
LONG WAY BACK FOR LEWIS
For the second successive race Hamilton finds himself facing an uphill battle to stay with Vettel in the drivers' standings, having fallen to the back of the race at Silverstone.
That came following an incident with Raikkonen, but the Mercedes man showed his superb talent to claim second place and stay in touch with his title rival.
Doing that at Hockenheim will not be as easy given the lack of overtaking opportunities, but watching the four-time champion try will keep the race interesting throughout.
"I will not to give up," said the Briton. "All I can do is put aside that negative energy and see [Sunday's race] as another opportunity to rise.
"Hockenheim is a trickier for overtaking on than Silverstone, but I'll do everything I can."
“Your heart sinks and sometimes you just can’t believe things unfold the way they do, but all you can do is suck it up.— Mercedes-AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) July 21, 2018
“All I can do is put aside that negative energy and see tomorrow as another opportunity to rise...”
@LewisHamilton #GermanGP pic.twitter.com/FdoY9ge1SG
1. Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari)
2. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)
3. Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari)
4. Max Verstappen (Red Bull)
5. Kevin Magnussen (Haas)
6. Romain Grosjean (Haas)
7. Nico Hulkenberg (Renault)
8. Carlos Sainz (Renault)
9. Charles Leclerc (Sauber)
10. Sergio Perez (Force India)
1. Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) 171
2. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) 163
3. Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) 116
4. Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull) 106
5. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) 104
1. Ferrari 287
2. Mercedes 267
3. Red Bull 199
4. Renault 70
5. Haas 51
2016: Lewis Hamilton
2014: Nico Rosberg
2013: Sebastian Vettel
2012: Fernando Alonso
The threat of rain will continue into Sunday for the race, but temperatures will increase at Hockenheim after a chilly and damp qualifying.
|MLS Review: Wayne´s World as Rooney inspires DC United, LAFC win|
|Djokovic and Dimitrov survive but Zverev loses in Cincinnati|
|Rain halts Halep as Muguruza´s defence ends and Wozniacki retires|
|Ozil´s racism claims nonsense, says Kroos|
|Malcom lost for words after Camp Nou bow alongside Messi|
|Injured Fowler withdraws from play-off opening Northern Trust|
|Marcelo happy with Madrid squad amid transfer talk|
|Foles isn´t worried about Brady´s handshake snub|
|Eli Manning on Jalen Ramsey´s comments: ´Who?´|
|Cerezo: Atletico´s objective is to reach Champions League final|
|Judge´s recovery taking longer than expected|
|Ronaldo in the past as Casemiro backs Lopetegui after Madrid loss|
|With our ´cojones´ Atletico can beat anyone – Costa revels in Super Cup glory|
|Super Cup loss doesn´t change Real Madrid transfer policy, says Lopetegui|
|Griezmann: Super Cup triumph justifies staying at Atletico|
|Valverde defends Suarez performances|
|Simeone´s eclipses Aragones as Atletico´s top coach with seventh title|
|Rockets GM: LeBron James is ´the greatest ever´|
|Salihamidzic, Kovac not standing in way of Rudy exit|
|Jaguars DB Ramsey calls Bills QB Allen ´trash´|
|Real Madrid 2 Atletico Madrid 4 (after extra time): Saul stunner seals Super Cup glory|
|Ex-India Test captain Wadekar dies aged 77|
|Gundogan ready to step up in absence of injured De Bruyne|
|Djokovic overcomes illness to see off Mannarino|
|Diego Costa nets fastest UEFA Super Cup goal ever|
|Everton feared missing out on Mina after World Cup strike|
|Barcelona 3 Boca Juniors 0: Messi, Malcom net as Barca win Joan Gamper Trophy|
|All Blacks stick with Barrett as Mo´unga misses out altogether|
|Modric benched for UEFA Super Cup clash with Atletico Madrid|
|Cipriani charged with assault after Jersey nightclub incident|
|Hamburg 1 Bayern Munich 4: Wagner and Muller hit braces in comeback victory|
|WATCH: Messi scores first goal as Barcelona captain|
|Iniesta, Xavi and Puyol were great teachers, says new Barcelona captain Messi|
|Moses retires from international football|
|Goals, assists, set-pieces - The stats that show De Bruyne is almost irreplaceable for City|
|Bergeron wins mammoth 24-man U.S. Amateur play-off|
|Hart to Burnley "not rocket science", says Dyche|
|Leipzig, Schalke reject Rudy transfer rumours|
|Yedlin knee injury not serious, Newcastle confirm|
|Bartomeu satisfied with Barcelona squad amid Pogba links|
|Kevin De Bruyne suffers knee injury|
|Steelers QB Roethlisberger in concussion protocol|
|Kehrer to PSG not complete, say Schalke|
|Hopoate handed 10-year ban from NSWRL|
|Is this worth it? Injuries prompted Te´o to consider future|
|Croatia hero Subasic retires from international football|
|Iniesta makes it two in two for Vissel Kobe|
|Chelsea send out defensive duo on loan|
|Zaha 2023: Palace star means more than goals|
|De Jong set for Ajax stay despite Barcelona interest|
|Serena ´still at the very beginning´ of comeback|
|Ajax can benefit from Mourinho approach - Blind|
|Foley not convinced by reports All Blacks will drop Barrett|
|Zaha signs Crystal Palace extension|
|Burnley midfielder O´Neill makes A-League loan move|
|Godin yet to renew with Atletico Madrid amid transfer interest|
|Federer ´feeling better every day´ after Wimbledon disappointment|
|Kante comfortable with surprise new Chelsea role|
|Rugby Championship 2018: The numbers behind New Zealand´s dominance|
|LaLiga 2018-19: Bale ready to be Madrid´s shining light after five years in Ronaldo´s shadow|
|Rodgers unimpressed by absence of ´fit´ Boyata|
|Braves´ Acuna Jr. has arrived as a true MLB star|
|LA Galaxy 2 Colorado Rapids 2: Jackson´s deflected strike sees spoils shared|
|Victory offer postponed retirement, says Honda|
|Kyrgios forgets tennis shoes, Federer back in business|
|Williams knocked out as Garcia and Pliskova advance in Ohio|
|Kvitova sees off Serena in Cincinnati classic|
|Federer dispatches Gojowczyk in Cincinnati|
|Stead succeeds Hesson as New Zealand coach|
|Duminy encouraged despite South Africa´s mixed results|