Valtteri Bottas believes progress made with the set-up of his Mercedes Formula 1 car proved crucial to beating teammate Lewis Hamilton to pole position at Silverstone.

After Hamilton stormed to pole at the British Grand Prix, Bottas managed to turn the tables on the six-times world champion to pip him on the final flying laps of Q3 by just 0.063s to land pole for this weekend’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix.

It marked Bottas first pole since the season-opening Austrian Grand Prix and the Finn put his qualifying success down to improvements made with the set-up of his W11.

“I think set-up wise we made good steps from last weekend, that’s why I think the qualifying performance for me was better than last weekend,” Bottas explained.

“In terms of set-up, at least for me driving wise, we’ve been able to find a bit more, as the same process got better throughout the weekend.

“Of course I cannot go into too much details in terms of what we did set-up wise, but we’ve been able to improve the car’s set-up for me.

“I think I had a slight deficit in qualifying last weekend, just in terms of the direction I want last weekend.

“I don’t think it was a bad race car, but I hope now it’s optimised for both,” he added. “As always between the races, we analyse everything from the race weekend, the set-up, my driving in qualifying and the race, and I drove a bit better.

“At least today I managed to some things better than I did last weekend. It’s a pretty standard process, to be honest, I just don’t want to go into the details about the set-up, but it just that it felt better today in qualifying than last weekend.”

Bottas not only denied Hamilton the chance to land an eighth pole at Silverstone, but he also ended his teammate’s recent qualifying momentum with the Briton securing three consecutive poles prior to this weekend.

“It’s a very good feeling to be on pole, I love the qualifying and especially here, in Silverstone, it’s pretty good fun,” Bottas said.

“The feeling was, from the practice sessions, that the Mediums could be even faster than the Soft tyre, that’s why in Q2, when we had both compounds, I knew there were still going to be good opportunities to improve on the second Q3 run.

“I the first run I knew there were some things missing and I could find more. There was no one key place, it was more about getting a clean lap, putting the sectors together. It was a good lap, no doubt, so a good feeling.”

 

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