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Lewis Hamilton demoted to back of grid

Hamilton was in high spirits after qualifying - only to see his efforts dashed Credit: Reuters

Stevenage born Lewis Hamilton has been stripped of pole position for today’s Spanish Grand Prix and demoted to the back of the grid – after effectively running out of fuel during qualifying.

He had completed his triumphant lap and was midway through a ‘slow-down’ lap when his McLaren team ordered him to stop because of a ‘technical problem’.

The car was found to have just 1.3 litres of petrol after it was hoisted back to the pits – insufficient for it to have completed the lap and then to have provided a mandatory one-litre fuel sample.

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Hamilton claims poll in Spanish Grand Prix

Stevenage born Lewis Hamilton snatched his third pole position of the season for tomorrow's Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona.

But it wasn't all plain sailing for the McClaren star, as he was forced to stop his car on the track on the way back to the pits.Hamilton took top spot at the Circuit de Catalunya, from surprise front rower Pastor Maldonado, by just 0.6secs.

Hamilton's session ended with him stopping on track, but that did not detract from his obvious delight in clinching his 22nd pole in F1.

Hamilton's McClaren teammate, Jenson Button will start from11th on the grid with Red Bull's Mark Webber directly behind him.