Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Red Bull Ring, 2020

Hamilton: Dominant pole position lap was “close to perfect”

2020 Styrian Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton says the lap which put him on pole position for the Styrian Grand Prix was “close to perfect”, after beating the field by 1.2 seconds in qualifying.

The Mercedes driver’s penultimate lap in Q3 would have been good enough to put him on pole. But he pulled a further half-second ahead of the field with his final effort.

“Honestly, it was a fantastic lap, the last one,” said Hamilton. “The importance of managing your time out there, managing your your battery pack, knowing when to use the few laps that you have on the qualifying modes, creating the gap, not making a mistake when it counts… obviously the lap that I had before was good enough. But still that last lap for me was really as close to perfect as I could really get it in those conditions.

“Considering it was raining more, it makes me even happier knowing that I went a little bit quicker during that time.”

Hamilton compared his performance to his dominant win in the very wet British Grand Prix of 2008, when he finished 68 seconds ahead of his closest rival.

“It definitely takes me back to times like Silverstone 2008 because when you’re really at one with the car and you’re not fazed at all,” he said.

“You have to be very dynamic with your driving style from corner to corner because the wet patches arrive, the puddles are shifting about with the cars that are driving ahead of you, which is which is a massive challenge.

“So I’m smiling under this mask, I’m super happy.”

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  • 14 comments on “Hamilton: Dominant pole position lap was “close to perfect””

    1. A lap for the ages. VER is a seriously talented driver, especially in the wet. It’s great that Lewis has someone this good pushing him. He needs that. Fantastic Qualy today Lewis. Top drawer. Let’s turn that into 26 points tomorrow.

      1. Verstappen wasn’t “pushing” Lewis or anything of the sort. Lewis has been showcasing his wet weather driving abilities long before Verstappen got into Formula 1.

        1. Think you’ve misunderstood. Lewis knows he has VER snapping at his heels. That WAS the case today until Lewis pulled out 2 Worldy laps. Which we all know Lewis can do. Lewis is better than VER in every respect, not just in the wet, but he can’t take it easy. Why are you on the defensive?

          1. Why “just not in the wet”? Hamilton’s wet weather record is superb. The only bad wet race I can think of in recent times is Germany last year. Which It so happens Ver won, but both had incidents and saved themselves From dnfs but Hams error was magnified by the subsequent botched pit and a 5sec penalty. Are you basing Vers supposed wet superiority on that one race?
            Verstappen is undoubtably a great driver and he is also a great driver in the wet As his Brazil 2016 performance showed (and which Hamilton won). He might even be a better driver than Ham in the wet but I don’t think the evidence is quite there yet, three or four more wet races together and we’ll know.

    2. More of Ham vs Max please. The two best drivers on the grid by some margin. Throughout Q3 it looked like it will be between Ham and Max for the pole.

    3. Get in there Lewis! You absolute GOAT!

    4. GtisBetter (@)
      11th July 2020, 18:46

      Fantastic driving

    5. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      11th July 2020, 19:16

      What can anyone say that hasn’t been said? A magisterial performance by Lewis. You expect something incredible but then this happens and words can’t do justice to it.

      This track doesn’t suit his driving style but that didn’t stop him from demolishing his opponents in it.

      The LH Red Bull ring is the way it should be called. I’m sure Horner did not foresee this.

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        11th July 2020, 21:11

        The track shouldn’t be called what you state based just on this. You even state it doesn’t normally suit his driving style. And that much is very clear most races here. Despite having the best car, he’s out qualified his team mate just 3 out of 8 times. And this is the only time he’s outqualified Bottas here.

        He also didn’t get a podium the last 2 years both of which were his own fault. He gave himself a grid drop in both races too. 2018, we can take out as neither finished – but even there, he got outqualified by Bottas. The year before, Bottas got pole and Hamilton had a messy lap and could only manage 3rd. He did have a grid penalty this race which was planned, but he didn’t manage to recover to a podium position.

        The last time he got a podium was 2016, and even then Rosberg had got the better of him until the very last lap.

        A very small element of Hamilton’s not so good results here have been down to bad luck, but other than today, which was admittedly an amazing qualifying run, he really is not that good at this circuit.

        The fact you go as far as saying it should be called the LH Red Bull ring just presumably based on a single qualifying result just shows how much of a Hamilton fan you are rather than looking at his negative history here.

        1. NeverElectric
          11th July 2020, 21:51

          Someone’s feeling a little NaCl today….

        2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
          12th July 2020, 0:44

          @thegianthogweed that was my point – the fact that Lewis can pull something like that off at this track where he struggles is absolutely incredible. We should also qualify the word struggle as in 2016 he was overtaking Rosberg on slicks with medium tires, something that’s nearly impossible to do.

          1. Slicks? All dry weather tyres are slicks.

    6. 1.2 seconds just wow!!!

      1. Interestingly 100 times the gap between him and Bottas the previous race at the same circuit!

        Stunning drive by Sainz to take third over a Merc and a Red Bull.

    Comments are closed.