Valtteri Bottas was left ruing a couple of small mistakes in the final sector of his last Q3 lap in qualifying for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Saturday after narrowly losing out on pole position to Mercedes Formula 1 teammate Lewis Hamilton.

Bottas bounced back from a difficult Q2 to grab second place on the grid at the Yas Marina Circuit, finishing 0.162 seconds shy of Hamilton in the final stage of qualifying.

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As his teammate celebrated his 11th pole of the year, Bottas was left with a pang of disappointment after seeing his hopes disappear in the final sector of the lap, prior to which he was within one-tenth of Hamilton's time, only to lose another tenth to his teammate.

"For sure I was aiming for the pole. I had a good result here last year but I couldn’t repeat that," Bottas said after the session.

"Personally, P2 is not what I was aiming for, but for us, even after we could secure the constructors’ title, we can still perform at a very high level. So, as a team, being P1 and P2 for the final race is good.

"In my first lap I felt there was plenty I could improve, and the gap would get smaller between us than in the first runs. In the second run I think there was definitely some track improvement, and both of us managed to find some time. But he just managed to get a little bit of a more complete lap, in the end."

Bottas explained how he struggled to dial his Mercedes W09 car in through the earlier stages of qualifying, particularly when running on the Ultrasoft tyre in Q2.

"I think that what hurt me a bit was there was a couple of runs in qualifying where I couldn’t get a good lap in," Bottas said.

"I think with the Ultrasoft tyres, at the start of Q2 and in some other runs, I really struggled with some things in the car.

"But I managed to have a couple of decent laps in Q3 and we could secure a well-earned one-two for the team."

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