Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport lock out the front row in Monaco. Lewis Hamilton claimed his 85th Formula One pole position – his second of the 2019 season and the second of his career in Monte Carlo. Valtteri Bottas will start tomorrow’s race from P2 on the grid – his best-ever grid position in Monaco. Today’s result marks Lewis’ 59th pole position with Mercedes in F1, making him the driver with the most pole positions for a single team ever. Both drivers will start tomorrow’s Monaco Grand Prix on the Soft tyre.
This is one of the best poles I can remember. We’ve had a lot of success over the years, but I can’t really remember a pole that means as much as this one. It’s been such a difficult week for the whole team and me personally. It’s amazing that we’ve turned up here as a team, continuing to take strides forward together collectively, get stronger and improve our performance weekend in, weekend out. I’m just so proud of everyone. We have a cloud over us this weekend, so we’re really trying to lift each other up and we’r e trying to deliver for Niki. I have not had a huge amount of success in Monaco over the years, I never quite got that perfect lap, but I think today was as close as I can get to it. This one is for Niki.
I definitely felt like I had the speed to take pole today. My first run in Q3 was quick, but I had two or three tenths in my pocket. I was stuck in traffic on my final out lap in Q3, so my tyres weren’t warm enough for the second run. As soon as I started the lap I could feel that they weren’t gripping and I saw during the lap on the screens that Lewis took pole. For me personally that’ s annoying, but for the team it’s another incredible result. We have a long race ahead of us and anything can happen tomorrow. The run into Turn 1 is very short in Monaco, so it’s tricky to make a difference there, but I will keep pushing and use every opportunity that might come up.
I’m really happy. We struggled a bit to understand how to best prep the tyre to warm them up and get them into the temperature window. We had to decide between two laps or one lap to prepare them, but in the end we found the right formula. Valtteri had a sensational first lap in Q3, but he hit some traffic on the out lap for his second run, so his tyres were a bit too cold and he didn’t have enough grip. Lewis put in a fantastic second lap and managed to get pole. It’s a shame for Charles; I think he had it in him for to fight for front row in his home race. The weather forecast keeps changing, but the latest I heard was that there’s a 60 percent chance for rain in the race, so it should be exciting tomorrow.
Source: Mercedes-AMG F1