Hamilton fastest in final practice for 70th Anniversary GP

Reserve driver movements at Silverstone

"I think set up-wise, we've made good steps from last weekend, that's why I think the qualifying performance for me was better today than last weekend".

"I had a good start last weekend so I see no reason why I couldn't have a good start", said Bottas. "For me it just wasn't a flawless lap".

Six-time Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton has yet to sign an extension with Mercedes beyond the 2020 season.

That again looks like being a straight shoot-out between the Mercedes pair for pole position on Sunday though Lando Norris of McLaren and Nico Huelkenberg, deputizing for Sergio Perez in a Racing Point, produced strong final practice sessions.

Both McLaren drivers, along with Renault's Daniel Ricciardo, set slower lap times, suggesting their focus was on tyre evaluation this session.

"It's been a positive day with small adjustments to gain a millisecond here and there", said Hamilton.

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McLaren has a deal to use one of the Mercedes reserve drivers, but as Stoffel Vandoorne is racing in Germany fulfilling his Formula E commitments and Esteban Gutierrez is now not a super licence holder, di Resta was an obvious third choice.

Reflecting on his performance in qualifying, Hamilton was happy with the balance of his Mercedes but conceded Bottas was "a bit too quick". It's the second week in a row we're racing around this wonderful Northamptonshire circuit. He attempted to use the fastest soft tire in a last-ditch effort to crack the top 10 while most of the rest of the field stuck with mediums, but even that wasn't enough to take him higher up the grid.

Team-mate Carlos Sainz, who will replace Vettel at Ferrari in 2021, finished 13th with Norris 4-1 up on the Spaniard in qualifying trim this term.

Instead, it was Daniil Kvyat who rued running wide through Chapel and at Stowe as he just missed out in P16.

Hamilton heads into the second race in consecutive weeks at Silverstone with a 30-point championship lead following last weekend's British Grand Prix triumph. Also failing to progress were Kevin Magnussen (Haas), Nicholas Latifi (Williams) and the Alfa Romeos of Antonio Giovinazzi and Kimi Raikkonen.

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