Lewis Hamilton is keeping one eye on the weather ahead of the German Grand Prix as he expects the strong possibility of rain or hot conditions to become Mercedes’ biggest worry while fighting for victory.

The reigning Formula 1 world champion secured pole position at Hockenheim ahead of Red Bull Honda’s Max Verstappen as chief threats at Ferrari Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel both suffered separate mechanical heartache leaving them down in 10th and 20th respectively on the starting grid.

With Mercedes struggling in hot conditions this season, leading to the team running a new cooling package debuted this weekend, Hamilton also remains wary of the heavy rain forecast on race day.

“I think it’s weather – that can be a threat,” Hamilton said. “There was talk of rain and potentially on race day.

“I’ve not looked at the long runs, so I don’t know how strong they are on the long runs. It’s not the easiest of tracks to always overtake.

“But depending on the temperature, if it was like yesterday that makes it quite a difficult race and probably more stops.

“If it’s like Saturday, which again actually starting getting hotter towards the end, it’s still going to be a real challenge. I think the real challenge is just making sure we do all our due diligence and make sure we operate at the level we have been operating at.”

The weather forecast for the German GP currently sees rain expected to arrive throughout the day at Hockenheim with a 60% chance of rain for the start of the race but temperatures are not expected to peak to similar levels as seen at the start of the race weekend when Mercedes suffered.