Nothing to separate the Silver Arrows at Silverstone, as home hero Hamilton claims crowd-pleasing British Grand Prix pole!
Lewis claimed his third British Grand Prix pole position (2007, 2013, 2015) and the 46th of his Formula One career to move into a clear third position on the all-time list of pole winners behind Michael Schumacher and Ayrton Senna. Nico qualified second, just 0.113s behind his team-mate or, in other words, a 0.1% gap in one-lap performance. Both drivers ran once in Q1 (prime) and Q2 (option) before making two option runs in Q3. Today’s result marks the third consecutive British Grand Prix pole for MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS.
It’s a special day and an extra special feeling getting pole on my home turf in front of all the fantastic fans that have come out here to Silverstone. They’ve been absolutely incredible, so a big thank you to everyone for the support. It hasn’t been a completely smooth weekend – I’d not quite managed to find the right balance throughout the practice sessions. Although it’s my favourite part of the track, it’s been tough through the middle sector in particular with the wind. But luckily it all came together in qualifying. That was such a buzz – having the car working underneath me and seeing all the flags waving out of the corner of my eye as I came round the lap. I’ve got my brother here too and I’ve seen so many messages on banners in the crowd and on social media building up to today. I can’t thank everyone enough for their support. I’m very, very happy with that one!
My first run in Q3 was quick and I thought I had nailed it but, when I had a look on my dash, Lewis was just one tenth quicker which was very annoying! In the second run I was set to improve – but something felt wrong with my left front tyre. I had no grip, so we need to look into that later. I’ve had a tricky weekend so far with a few car problems – but it’s all still possible tomorrow as we have seen in the last race. Another big thanks to the boys in the garage. They had a lot of work to do again in the morning session to get my car back out after the issue. Also, it’s really great to race here in front of such massive crowds. The people clearly love racing and even cheer on the non-British drivers which is very cool to see, so a big hand for them too.
Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport
What a fantastic qualifying session and such a close battle between the boys. In the end, Lewis mastered the windy conditions and put everything together on that first run in Q3 – and his time was good enough for pole. You could see the fans cheering every single time he went past the grandstands and a lap like that deserved pole position. But we can’t overlook Nico, just one tenth behind. Like nearly every driver, he couldn’t improve on the final run and reported a loss of grip from his tyres. It seemed like the conditions shifted and made it tricky out there. The advantage has been swinging back and forth between the drivers all weekend and everything’s open for tomorrow. We have got the two Williams behind us and they had some strong pace in practice, so we cannot get complacent at any point. It’s all about getting every detail right if we want to convert the front row into podium finishes.
Paddy Lowe, Executive Director (Technical)
That was a fantastic competition! It was very tense and exciting between the drivers; I think the whole crowd has been waiting all weekend to see how the contest plays out between Lewis and Nico. So far, it has been back and forth between the two of them, with Nico quicker one moment, then Lewis the next. Within the team, we had no idea who would end up on top. They were two great laps from the drivers in tricky conditions and a great performance from the team to get the cars into a good position with the balance for the final runs. Congratulations to Lewis and Nico – and now we look forward to the main event and hope we will put on a good show for the fans.
Source: Mercedes-AMG F1