For the fourth time this year, but the first time since May, it was Bottas who headed an all-Mercedes front row as the Finn edged out to Hamilton by a mere six thousandths of a second.
Hamilton found himself on the back foot from the start of Q3 when a small error under braking for Brooklands cost him a stronger opening lap time.
The Englishman, who congratulated Bottas, said: “Ultimately not good enough. We had worked really hard through the session but it just got a little bit away from us.
“Sacrificed a lap in Q2 which would have helped get a reading of how the car was but we didn’t end up doing that and then at the end I had the mistake on the first lap and the second lap one just wasn’t really that great.
“But fair play to Valtteri, he did the job, but it’s a long race. We’ve got a great crowd here so hopefully I can do something good for them tomorrow.”
Asked if the early error had ultimately made the difference, Hamilton replied: “It doesn’t really matter. At the end of the day, you can’t go back, you can only move forwards. Valtteri did the job so congratulations to him.”
He added to Sky F1: “Valtteri did a good job, ultimately I didn’t do a good job. It was just an average job today.”
Hamilton targets stronger Sunday
Bottas’ fourth pole of F1 2019 – more than any other driver – puts him in the perfect position to try and close Hamilton’s 31-point championship lead in Sunday’s race.
Both drivers will start on the medium-compound tyres, whereas third-placed Charles Leclerc is on the softs, after Mercedes and Ferrari took different strategy approaches to Q2, when the top-10 lock in their tyre choices for the start of the race.
And after a strong long run on the medium compound in Friday practice, Hamilton is feeling optimistic in the W10’s race pace.
“It’s a long race tomorrow so I have to try and see how we can work the position I’m in to try to progress forwards,” said Hamilton.
“The long run was good so I hope that I’m able to utilise the tyre advantage we have starting on the mediums and do a good job tomorrow.”
F1 2019 heads to Silverstone for the big event of the motorsport summer. Join Sky Sports F1 for extensive coverage across the weekend – the race starts at 2.10pm. Find out more here to watch all the season live.