Lewis Hamilton takes 60th career pole in Brazil
By: S.H. Harding, Xiro Xone News November 12, 2016 Updated: 7:12 PM
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton took his 60th career pole position for tomorrow’s Brazilian Grand Prix just 0.102s ahead of teammate and title rival Nico Rosberg.
“It’s been feeling great all weekend. Every session today I was up front and able to maintain that position, finding a little bit more each time I went out. So, I’m really, really happy with it. I don’t know how obvious it is watching at home but, with this being one of the shortest circuits on the calendar, it’s somewhere that even the smallest margin can make a huge difference and it’s usually close out there. It’s a really tricky track to get right,” said Hamilton.
Nico Rosberg can take the championship with winning Sunday’s race. However, Hamilton has looked strong most of the weekend taking the first two practice sessions. A Mercedes one two with Hamilton finishing first, will take the title to the final round in Abu Dhabi.
“To win the race is definitely still possible from this position. The start is always a possibility and also with strategy it could be interesting tomorrow,” said Rosberg.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen qualified third and was 0.668s off Hamilton. Raikkonen was not happy with his first sector but pulled a strong final sector allowing him to edge out Verstappen who was struggling with rear grip which cost him time in the final sector.
“To be honest the feeling in the last lap was not so good, the front was sliding in the first two corners and I struggled a bit in the middle sector to put the lap together. I knew that it was better than the previous one but I thought it wouldn’t be enough because it was not an ideal one; It was good enough to be third and I’m positively surprised,” said Raikkonen.
Raikkonen’s teammate Sebastian Vettel finished fifth, 0.010s between him and Verstappen. Vettel had been dealing with a brake issue which kept him in the garage at the start of Q1.
Daniel Ricciardo took sixth and was just 0.055s off his teammate Verstappen in fourth.
“I was just a little disappointed with my last lap, I was expecting someone to jump ahead of me so Kimi being in front wasn’t a big surprise. It was an odd session, Q1 and Q2 felt good but then I wasn’t very happy with the grip of the new set of tyres I got. We need to look into this as the rear felt slick in sector 2, we will analyse and hopefully figure out why,” said Verstappen.
“We knew qualy would be tight with Ferrari in dry conditions, and it is close and I think that’s what makes it a little frustrating, but I’ll learn from that and hopefully tomorrow we can have a good race,” said Ricciardo.
Haas F1 driver Romain Grosjean finished seventh ahead of Force India drivers, Nico Hulkenberg in eighth and Sergio Perez in ninth. McLaren-Honda’s Fernando Alonso finished off the top ten.