Lewis Hamilton says he is not “looking to pull out miracles” from fifth as he bids to clinch the 2019 Formula 1 world championship in the United States Grand Prix.

Hamilton is 74 points clear of Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas and will wrap up his sixth drivers’ world title in Austin with a top eight finish during Sunday’s 56-lap race.

The Briton will start from a lowly fifth after struggling in qualifying, while Bottas pipped Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel to pole position around the Circuit of the Americas to score Mercedes’ first pole since July’s German Grand Prix.

“I don’t look at this race as a particularly important race, it’s as important as any other race,” Hamilton insisted.

“So it doesn’t stand out individually as an important race. There’s still two more after this.

"Naturally I approach it exactly the same, I’m not looking to pull out miracles. Things happen for a reason, it is a lesson learned and I’ll try to see if I can turn a negative into a positive that’s for sure.

Hamilton conceded after qualifying that has lack of pace had been “my fault” and he went on to explain where his Q3 laps fell apart during his media call on Saturday evening.

“The car was fine,” Hamilton said. “The first lap started off really well and then I lost time on the exit of Turn 11, then Turn 13, then Turn 14 and it just kept going.

“I was up I think seven or eighth tenths on my previous lap and then it came down to five and then it went up to six and then it came down to five.

“So I lost a bunch of time throughout the lap. The next one I clipped the curb into Turn 8 and the lap was done after that.”

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said it was a relief for his side to get its first pole position in four months at COTA. 

"You can see that the top cars are all very close, so I think we did some really good work from Friday to today, and Valtteri drove a very good lap," Wolff said after qualifying.

"But then it’s not perfect because we have a car on pole and a car in fifth and we need to figure out how to overcome that."



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