17:22 – The 91st pole position for Lewis Hamilton has arrived after another brilliant showing of Mercedes at Silverstone, but Hamilton had to recover quickly after a spin and thought he was making things difficult for himself.
Hamilton spun in the second qualifying phase of the circuit at Luffield, with the British raising a red flag to clear gravel. A rare moment from Hamilton, although he quickly corrected his mistake and flashed to a new track record in Q3 with a 1.24.303, three tenths faster than stable mate Valtteri Bottas and a full second faster than the best non-Mercedes, the Red Bull by Max Verstappen.
The brilliant pole once again underlined the dominance of Mercedes, but Hamilton still tried to mention a ‘difficult day’ afterwards, which can only be estimated according to his sky-high standard. “It was actually not such a nice qualification though. The difference with third place may be big, but Valtteri keeps pushing me to the limit,” Hamilton says. “I had some changes made to qualifying and it turned out wrong, so I was struggling. The track is great, the wind is different on every part of the circuit. Qualification is about building confidence and after that spin was I kind of lost that. I don’t know how, but I managed to get myself back on track. The first round in Q3 was not perfect, but the second was better. ”
It is a pole at home, but not for your own audience, because the stands of historic Silverstone will remain empty this weekend. A special feeling, especially for the six-time world champion. “Normally, sirens now sound and flags are everywhere. And now everything is empty. That is a very special atmosphere, I definitely miss the fans. But hopefully they are happy with the result. I have to thank the team, they continue always work hard to push us forward. “
So Bottas had to admit three-tenths on his impressively strong teammate, while he was always a sigh faster. The Finn is not satisfied with his own performance in Q3 when it really matters. “It was actually a good qualification to Q3. I was more comfortable in the car and was really waiting for Q3 to get it done. But in Q3, the rear of the car started to drift more than I hoped. Lewis thought more lap time than me, so he deserves pole. But for me it is disappointing. ”