Lewis Hamilton made no mention of his title aspirations following qualifying for the Chinese Grand Prix, but he admits he is 'optimistic' of a good performance in the race after securing pole position.

His sixth top spot of the season, Hamilton needs to finish just one point behind Fernando Alonso to ensure that he will be crowned the 2007 Formula 1 World Champion with one race remaining.

Indeed, with the two Ferraris between himself and his team-mate, Hamilton looks well placed to get the title back in British hands for the first time in 11 years.

A strong qualifying session for the rookie driver, Hamilton never looked as though he had the pace of the Ferraris during practice and even in the first qualifying phases, but a sublime final lap was enough to set a marker that the remaining trio would not be able to better.

Claiming to have made the most out of the option tyres that several of his rivals have otherwise struggled on, Hamilton insists he has a strong strategy to come out fighting for the race win.

"A very good qualifying for me and the team. I was pretty confident that we were fast enough to beat the Ferraris here; however, they looked very strong, particularly in the fast corners.

"I made my first run on the prime Bridgestone Potenza compound, which had been the more consistent tyre so far, however we opted to do the final run with the option tyres and luckily this worked perfectly for us.

"I still expect a very close fight for tomorrow's race but we have a strong strategy and I am optimistic."



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