MELBOURNE, March 15 (Xinhua) -- Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes on Saturday claimed the pole position during the 2014 Australian F1 Grand Prix qualifying session in Melbourne's Albert Park street circuit, with his teammate Nico Rosberg placing third, giving Mercedes a great advantage for the race due on Sunday.
The qualifying session kicked off in a heavy rain shower but Hamilton kept his composure and handled the pressure to snatch top spot, with 0.317 seconds faster than Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull in the second.
However, four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull ended the second qualifying session in 13th place, missing his chance to fight for pole for the first time in 27 races.
"There's not much I can do now but we are disappointed," said the German driver.
Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari, champion of last year's F1 race in Melbourne crashed out in second qualifying session and was only 12th fastest in the session, only one place ahead of Vettel.
Raikkonen's teammate Spanish driver Fernando Alonso ranked fifth.