Lewis Hamilton triumphs in tense battle for Spanish GP pole

Sebastian Vettel- Scuderia Ferrari

I think the last run in Q3 was fine, there were no mistakes, so there was not much left.

Asked by Autosport just how important the Barcelona pole was to him in light of his recent form, he said: "We've had one pole, we haven't really had great qualifying sessions after that, so it was important for me to get back into a good position with qualifying, as it is usually a strength of mine".

"To have the performance I've had, I am very happy with that".

The Briton was expected to be the frontrunner when the season got underway after the Mercedes team looked to be clearly quicker than their closest rivals Ferrari and Red Bull Racing after the pre-season tests in Barcelona.


"Qualifying was good for me but not quite ideal - and it ended up very close on the final times", said Bottas. "But for us as a team this is a flawless result with two cars on the front row. We though the Super Soft was the better tyre for us and it worked, bit it was still marginal the gains we made". While he was unable to get the better of the Mercedes pair on his final lap, Vettel counts third place as a success having reverted to using the softs for his final attempt. So, we still have the same tires if you look at the colors, but they are harder than they used to be. "In qualifying, we will have a clear reference how much we have improved compared to the others". We were quite ok this morning, trying to find the right direction. But it was straightforward in qualifying and in Q3 in the first run I locked up a little bit into Turn 1, so the first sector was already slow.

"At the start of the season they were very strong in Australia and then we took over but they were struggling". Even if the start doesn't go in our favor, I think we always have a strong auto to keep fighting. We are happy with the new package. I think tomorrow it will be an interesting race and we'll be close; the same as happened in the last couple of races. "We'll try to make a good start and see how the race pans out". "I've never seen a Formula One auto crash like that on the exit of Turn 12", Sky Sports pundit Martin Brundle said in bemusement. "As I said, it's the same for all of us". You have to consider that from turn one to turn four is flat out now, also turn seven to turn ten.

"These conditions make it very hard to define where the set-up needs to go".

"And I am sure there have been people with nerves over the last few races, just not really understanding [what's happening] and feeling like we're not really learning enough".

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