Lewis Hamilton delivered a devastating last lap to claim a second successive pole for Sunday's Canadian Grand Prix.
The McLaren driver clocked one minute 17.886 seconds to better Robert Kubica's mark for BMW Sauber by more than half a second.
Kimi Raikkonen lines up third for Ferrari alongside Renault's Fernando Alonso, who did well to qualify fourth.
Jenson Button will start at the back after he was forced to withdraw his Honda because of gearbox problems. The Briton will share the back row with Toro Rosso's Sebastian Vettel, who did not take part in qualifying after ploughing into the wall during final practice.
Hamilton topped the timesheets in all three qualifying sessions in Montreal with a characteristic display of attacking but assured driving.
Ferrari desperately tried to close down the world championship leader in the dying minutes but, though they were fast through the first two sectors, they could not match the McLaren man's pace.
Kubica, who suffered a high-speed crash at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve last year, came closest to toppling Hamilton as he clocked 1:18.498 with just seconds left. But Hamilton, who had just started his final hot lap, comfortably eclipsed that mark to take his eighth career pole.
"I felt at home in qualifying," said the Briton. "The team did a great job in the early stages of each qualifying session. "I had a feeling that Kimi was hunting me down, so I knew I had to stick it out and make sure I got a good lap.
"I think I found six or seven tenths (of a second) there, so I'm pretty happy with it.
"It was a bit similar to last year and it felt just as good."
Nico Rosberg, who was fastest in final practice, claimed fifth spot ahead of Ferrari's Felipe Massa and McLaren's Heikki Kovalainen.
BMW Sauber's Nick Heidfeld, Honda's Rubens Barrichello and Mark Webber for Red Bull completed the top 10.