Mr Gove had worked closely with Mr Johnson on the successful campaign to convince voters to support leaving the European Union, and had been widely expected to back the former mayor's leadership bid.
Mr Gove, who grew up in Aberdeen and attended Robert Gordon's College, said the United Kingdom needed a prime minister who believed "heart and soul" in Brexit and - in an apparent swipe at his former ally's late conversion to the Leave cause - said he was himself suited to the job because he had "consistently" argued for withdrawal from the EU.
Backing Boris Johnson to become the next prime minister would have been a "betrayal" of the country - said PM hopeful Michael Gove.
Johnson's allies claim to see the "hand of George Osborne" in the plot and expect the Chancellor to come out in favour of Gove. Throughout his political career, Mr Gove has frequently said his political colleagues were far better "equipped" for the role than him and he lacked the capability to lead the country.
The Liberal Democrat leader, Tim Farron, said Johnson had followed "the Bullingdon playbook: you break it and someone else has to fix it", referring to the Oxford drinking society of which Johnson and David Cameron were members. Tory MPs will vote in successive rounds, with the candidate polling the lowest eliminated each time, until only two remain.
"There's a lot of raw nerves around, but I can see through the mist that we've got a critical choice ahead and I think Michael Gove is the change candidate with the vision, but also the track record, to deliver both on Brexit and the aspirational society we need".
He said Britain must "reduce uncertainty by moving as quickly as possible to a new relationship with Europe and being super competitive, open for business and free trading".
Politicians in Tayside are battling to save investment from the European Union worth up to £10m following the Brexit vote, says The Courier.
"During that period I had hoped that Boris would rise to the occasion because inevitably when you have a leadership election, people are tested, questions are asked of them, tests are set".
The other three candidates are British Secretary of State for Defense Liam Fox, British Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Stephen Crabb and British Minister of State for Energy Andrea Leadsom. He has created the greatest constitutional crisis in peacetime in my life.
Mr Johnson insisted he had no regrets about campaigning for Leave, and it would be "great" for the country.
"I never thought I'd be in this position, I did not want it", he told a news conference in London.