Michael Schumacher has said it was a 'wonderful feeling' to set the best time today in qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix.
Schumacher put in a great lap in the top-ten shootout to edge out Red Bull Racing's Mark Webber by just 0.08 seconds. It was the 43-year-old's first pole position since the French Grand Prix back in 2006, although he won't get to enjoy it, as following his collision with Bruno Senna in Spain, he picked up a five-place grid penalty and as a result he will start tomorrow's race from sixth.
Despite that though, Schumacher was still pleased and given his comeback has been far from a fairytale, this result was a welcome boost.
“It is simply a wonderful feeling to set pole after such a long time, and particularly here in Monaco. Okay, it has taken a little bit longer than I might have wanted in the second chapter of my career, but that makes it even sweeter. It's just beautiful,” stated the Mercedes driver.
“We already thought that this circuit should suit us, and it's the perfect confirmation of all the work from every team member in Brackley, Brixworth and Stuttgart - a big thank you to every one of them, because this is a team result. Of course, it's unfortunate that I won't start from the very front but that's how it is. I will do as well as I can.
“We know that overtaking is tough but with DRS and KERS, you might as well try it - and you can be sure I will.”
Nico Rosberg meanwhile also did well in the sister car, and he set the third best time in Q3, a 1m 14.448s, something that means he will start from the front row after Schumacher's penalty.
“I am pleased with the result today and especially for what we have shown as a team in the past few weeks. We have had a couple of difficult races since the win in China but there has been a lot of hard work to turn it round, and today we were on top as a team which is great to see,” Rosberg added. “Thank you to everybody back at base who has brought us back to the front again.
“I had a pretty smooth qualifying session, and managed to save two sets of new super soft tyres for the race, but it was just so close out there this afternoon, it's incredible and fantastic for F1.
“Congratulations to Michael, he did a fantastic job. Of course, I am sorry for him that he must take the penalty, but that means I will be on the front row in Monaco. And at a race where overtaking can be so difficult, that's a really great place to start from.”