Lewis Hamilton won his team-mate Mercedes Valtteri Bottas in pole position for the Monaco Grand Prix, while Daniel Ricciardo qualified seventh.
Hamilton got the job from 0.086 while Max Verstappen was the best of the others for Red Bull Racing at 0.475 less.
Sebastian Vettel has twice met the fence while qualifying fourth, but his last attempt to exit Q1 came at the expense of Ferrari team-mate Charles Leclerc, who should start the 16th in his hometown.
Pierre Gasly is fifth in the second of the Red Bulls, but faces an investigation after an accident with Romain Grosjean during the second session.
Haas's team-mate Kevin Magnussen took a position after the checkered flag to push Ricciardo back into the fourth row in the only Renault to do the final stanza of the qualifying.
Bottas threw a 1: 10.252 on his first flyer in Q3 and almost equaled the next one, when Hamilton moved into second place at 0.231 s from the pace with his second time trial after a race to his first messy.
Verstappen finished third with 1: 10.641, from Vettel, Gasly and Magnussen, with Ricciardo tenth who did not set a time at that point.
Vettel touched the Tabac barrier last minute and while he continued for another round, the German did not improve.
Neither Bottas nor Verstappen could find more time, but Hamilton did it when he set a 1: 10.166, just before the lady for his first pole after the seasonal opening at Albert Park.
"This is a race that every driver dreams of being a child," the Brit said.
"No matter how many times you come here, it's still a dream, you still absolutely put everything you have.
"All the work we did, all the guys back at the factory, worked tirelessly, so we arrived with a great car and then a great battle with Valtteri; it was simply fast this weekend and all these races so far .
"I think that only the desire and the will to get this pole means so much to me. I had to dig deeper than ever and I'm so happy to have been able to get so deep and I'm really grateful to my team, and the ride is It was beautiful, so I feel fantastic. "
Bottas felt he could have been on pole not being satisfied with his first flyer before meeting traffic in his second run.
"I'm disappointed," he declared.
"After the first lap I still had the feeling that there were still many places where I could improve, so I left for the last race.
"On the way out, I had a lot of traffic, I couldn't get the tires hot enough for the timed lap, and so it was, so I felt I had it today but obviously not."
Ricciardo's deficit on pole at the end was 1.052, with the top 10 completed by Daniil Kvyat (Scuderia Toro Rosso), Carlos Sainz (McLaren) and Alexander Albon (Toro Rosso).
Renault's Nico Hulkenberg was the first to exit in Q2 after Magnussen got up at the end.
Lando Norris (McLaren), Romain Grosjean (Haas) and Alfa Romeos of Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi were also eliminated.
Grosjean was heavily hindered by a slow moving Gasly as he was pushing into the last stages of the room, and had to lock up to avoid sorting out Red Bull as they left Casino Square.
Leclerc joined the two entries of Racing Point and the two Williams in the last five in Q1, which came to a dramatic conclusion.
Both Hulkenberg and Vettel sat outside the cutoff with the checkered flag outside, this one surprised his team by scoring a hole after running to the fence in the middle of the pool complex in the last four minutes.
Hulkenberg denied Sergio Perez a place in Q2 before Vettel, who was sent back on track with enough time to start another timed lap, jumped from the 17th to the top.
By then, however, it was practically a zero-sum game for Ferrari, when the four-time world champion beat Leclerc, who was already sitting in the pit lane, returning to 16th place.
This crowned an eventful afternoon for the Monegasque, who was forced to return to his scale when he missed five minutes earlier.
He was also reprimanded after Practice 3, in which he was the fastest, for a violation of the procedure during a necessary Virtual Safety Car when Vettel locked up and hit the wall at Sainte Devote.
The start of the race is scheduled for Sunday at 2310 AEST, with 78 laps of travel.
|1||44||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||1: 11.542||1: 10.835||1: 10.166|
|2||77||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes||1: 11.562||1: 10,701||1: 10.252|
|3||33||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing Honda||1: 11.597||1: 10.618||1: 10.641|
|4||5||Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari||1: 11.434||1: 11,227||1: 10.947|
|5||10||Pierre Gasly||Red Bull Racing Honda||1: 11.740||1: 11.457||1: 11.041|
|6||20||Kevin Magnussen||Haas Ferrari||1: 11,865||1: 11.363||1: 11.109|
|7||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Renault||1: 11.767||1: 11.543||1: 11.218|
|8||26||Daniil Kvyat||Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda||1: 11,602||1: 11.412||1: 11.271|
|9||55||Carlos Sainz||McLaren Renault||1: 11,872||1: 11,608||1: 11.417|
|10||23||Alexander Albon||Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda||1: 12.007||1: 11.429||1: 11.653|
|11||27||Nico Hulkenberg||Renault||1: 12.097||1: 11.670|
|12||4||Lando Norris||McLaren Renault||1: 11,845||1: 11.724|
|13||8||Romain Grosjean||Haas Ferrari||1: 11,837||1: 12.027|
|14||7||Kimi Räikkönen||Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari||1: 11,993||1: 12,115|
|15||99||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari||1: 11.976||1: 12.185|
|16||16||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari||1: 12.149|
|17||11||Sergio Perez||Mercedes BWT Racing Point||1: 12.233|
|18||18||Lance Stroll||Mercedes BWT Racing Point||1: 12,846|
|19||63||George Russell||Williams Mercedes||1: 13.477|
|20||88||Robert Kubica||Williams Mercedes||1: 13.751|