Fernando Alonso ended Ferrari's long wait for a pole by grabbing top spot on the grid for Sunday's British Grand Prix at the end of a rain-hit qualifying session.

For the first time in 31 races, championship leader and double world champion Alonso will lead away the field at Silverstone.

The Spaniard is joined on the front row by Mark Webber in his Red Bull, beating the Australian by 0.047 seconds, with Mercedes' Michael Schumacher lining up in third place.

Lewis Hamilton qualified eighth for McLaren, with team-mate Jenson Button 18th, with Force India's Paul di Resta 11th.