November 2, 2019 / 10:21 PM / 18 days ago

Bottas on pole in Austin, Hamilton starts fifth

Nov 2, 2019; Austin, TX, USA; Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport driver Valtteri Bottas (77) of Finland during practice for the United States Grand Prix at Circuit of the Americas. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - Valtteri Bottas took pole position for Mercedes on Saturday at a U.S. Grand Prix the Finn has to win if he is to have any chance of staying mathematically in contention for the Formula One championship.

Team mate Lewis Hamilton, who will seal his sixth title in Austin on Sunday with two races to spare if he finishes eighth or higher regardless of where Bottas finishes, will start from fifth place.

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel joined Bottas on the front row of the grid with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen third and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc lining up fourth.

Writing by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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