RESULTS: Japanese Grand Prix – Qualifying results
Lewis Hamilton insists he is not too disheartened to miss out on pole position for the Japanese Grand Prix by just 0.013secs given the 'no man's land' deficit to Nico Rosberg coming into the all-important qualifying session.
The defending champion had trailed his title rival and Mercedes team-mate through each practice session and came into the final qualifying segment having made errors on his fastest laps in both FP3 and Q1.
Even so, Hamilton would find his form when it mattered to go top after the first flying runs and quicker again on his second effort. However, Rosberg would find more time on his second run, nudging him into second place by just 0.013secs or the equivalent of 82cm.
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Nevertheless, Hamilton was philosophical about the result but happier with the time, which he says was closer than he could have expected having struggled with set-up leading into the session.
“This weekend has not generally been that easy - not that they are ever easy - but not as strong as the last race. I was veering off a certain way in the set up and had to shuffle back so I was in no man's land coming into qualifying, the fact I managed to pull it back to that kind of gap I am happy with it really. I was making progress and I made the best job I could.”
A winner in Suzuka for the last two seasons, each time whilst starting P2 behind Rosberg on the grid, Hamilton doesn't buy into the suggestion that it is more likely to happen for a third time.
“Lots of different things happen in those years. Starting on pole is a good thing, but let's hope the work they have been doing on the starts can pay off maybe. Who knows what the weather will do whilst we are here so I will give it everything I have got.”
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