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Hamilton on pole for first race

Lewis Hamilton will start today's first Formula Three Euroseries race at Hockenheim on pole after the 2005 Champion topped the timesheets in a thrilling qualifying session this morning

Heavy showers left the circuit greasy throughout the session, and as a faint dry line appeared, the times improved in a final flurry of activity.

Hamilton spent much of the session on the fringes of the top 10, but he closed in on early pacesetters Franck Perera and Lucas di Grassi, before nailing the first lap under one minute and fifty seconds, with five minutes remaining.

The ASM driver went on to improve this benchmark further, to 1:49.698, and he had almost six tenths of a second in hand as the chequered flag fell.

Di Grassi emerged on top of a frantic scrap between several drivers for second. The Brazilian even set the fastest first sector of all on his final lap, but he dropped time to Hamilton in the second sector and then spun his Manor Motorsport Dallara-Mercedes entering the stadium section.

Maximillian Gotz spun twice but recovered to claim third, ahead of Guillaume Moreau's Signature car (top Opel again) and Perera. Paul di Resta was another to spin but he still ended the session in sixth, ahead of Sebastian Vettel.

British F3 Scholarship class race winner Ben Clucas will start his first F3 Euroseries race in eighth, but his best time - good enough for sixth - was disallowed for being set while a yellow flag was being waved, after Giedo van der Garde's spun car in the stadium.

Pos  Driver            Team                     Time               Laps
 1.  Lewis Hamilton    ASM F3                   1:49.698           13
 2.  Lucas di Grassi   Manor Motorsport         1:50.154 +  0.456  14
 3.  Maximilian Gotz   ASM F3                   1:50.179 +  0.481  15
 4.  Guillaume Moreau  Signature                1:50.377 +  0.679  15
 5.  Franck Perera     Prema Powerteam          1:50.414 +  0.716  14
 6.  Paul di Resta     Manor Motorsport         1:50.644 +  0.946  13
 7.  Sebastian Vettel  ASL Mucke Motorsport     1:50.819 +  1.121  14
 8.  Ben Clucas        Team Midland Euroseries  1:51.032 +  1.334  14
 9.  Greg Franchi      Prema Powerteam          1:51.122 +  1.424  14
10.  Fabio Carbone     Signature                1:51.266 +  1.568  15
11.  Kohei Hirate      Team Rosberg             1:51.334 +  1.636  15
12.  G. van der Garde  Team Rosberg             1:51.389 +  1.691  11
13.  Marco Bonanomi    Prema Powerteam          1:51.414 +  1.716  15
14.  Loic Duval        Signature-Plus           1:51.520 +  1.822  15
15.  James Rossiter    Signature-Plus           1:51.524 +  1.826  14
16.  Atila Abreu       ASL Mucke Motorsport     1:51.610 +  1.912  13
17.  Alejandro Nunez   HBR Motorsport           1:51.626 +  1.928  16
18.  Esteban Guerrieri Team Midland Euroseries  1:52.149 +  2.451  13
19.  Hannes Neuhauser  HBR Motorsport           1:52.194 +  2.496  12
20.  Thomas Holzer     AM-Holzer Rennsport      1:52.485 +  2.787  15
21.  Filip Salaquarda  Team I.S.R.              1:53.555 +  3.857  13

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