Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg qualified in third and sixth places during the delayed Qualifying session for the Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park this morning.
Nico topped both Q1 on Saturday afternoon and Q2 this morning, with both fastest times set on intermediate tyres. In Q3, the drivers completed a ‘banker’ lap on intermediates before switching the super soft compound. Lewis and Nico both set their fastest times on their second timed laps in Q3 on the drying circuit.
The conditions were very tricky out there today and the team did a great job to get us out at the right times. I haven’t had the best of weekends so far so I’m happy to have finally put a good lap together today. I’ve done a lap more than Sebastian on my tyres so I might struggle to go as long on the first stint but I’ll give it everything I can in the race this afternoon. The team have worked incredibly hard, both here and at the factories in Brackley and Brixworth, and they deserve a good result. We’ve got a good baseline to work from with this car but only time will tell where we can go from here.
That’s a good team result this morning if you compare to where we were at the end of last year, so we have made some good progress over the winter, which is down to the fantastic work of the team back at the factories. However, we can also see that there is still a gap to the quickest team. I was very quick in the wet but later it didn’t work out as well on the slicks. The race will be a different story and I expect to have good race pace which will help me gain positions this afternoon.
The first objective in a qualifying session like that is to be on the right tyre at the right time and the team ran the session as we would hope to. Lewis and Nico both did an excellent job and didn’t miss any of the opportunities that came their way. The car seems to be handling well and we will have to see how that develops in the race. Overall, a reasonable start with a busy few hours ahead of us to prepare for the race.
Drying conditions provide more opportunities to do things wrong than right, so we have to compliment the team on the pit wall and in the garage that our session ran so smoothly this morning. To be starting the opening race from third and sixth positions is a first indication that the team has made a step from last year. But the race will provide us with a fuller picture of where we stand right now.
Source: Mercedes AMG