SHANGHAI, April 13 (UPI) -- Lewis Hamilton claimed the pole position in the Chinese Grand Prix Saturday, steering his Mercedes around the Shanghai track in 1 minute, 34.484 seconds.
Hamilton's first pole performance as part of the Mercedes team was completed a scant 0.28 seconds ahead of Lotus driver Kimi Raikkonen.
"The lap was great. The team performed well all weekend so far, and I hope that we can carry that into tomorrow," said Hamilton, who jumped from McLaren to Mercedes during the off-season as a replacement for Michael Schumacher, who retired from Formula One.
The Chinese Grand Prix takes place Sunday on the 3.386-mile Shanghai International Circuit.