• British GP - Qualifying

Hamilton takes blame for qualifying call

ESPN Staff
July 5, 2014 « 'Zero tolerance' to running wide at Copse and Club | Rosberg thought qualifying gamble would fail »
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Lewis Hamilton says it was his decision to abort his final flying lap as he dropped to sixth, while title rival Nico Rosberg claimed a dramatic pole, on a drying track during a dramatic qualifying session at Silverstone.

As the clock expired Hamilton was P1 but he dived into the pits in the final sector, the area of the track where Mercedes team-mate Rosberg and a handful of other drivers were able to gain enough time to leap above Hamilton. As he and Rosberg crossed the line with seconds to spare, Mercedes told Hamilton to let Rosberg through if he did not think he could improve, but the Brit insists the decision to abort the lap was his own.

"It was my mistake," a visibly emotional Hamilton said post-qualifying.

When asked whether the team had told him to pull over later in he lap, Hamilton stressed his team was blameless in what happened.

"I don't remember [what was said]. Nothing that they said had any impact on my decision."

Once again Hamilton appeared to have the edge over Rosberg, only to make a mistake at a crucial moment like his spin in Austria, something he says is even more painful as it happened at his home race.

"That's the nature of British weather. We have great fans here today and I apologise for letting them down today. I will try to do what I can tomorrow from where I am. I think it's going to be dry tomorrow but either way I'll be giving it everything."

Hamilton also thinks his chances of victory all but evaporated in those closing moments of qualifying.

"I think at the moment I can't see that [winning], but I'll do what I can. When you get out of the car after a qualifying like that it's very difficult to be all happy and cheery but I'll analyse everything and work as hard as I can tonight to make sure I come back strong tomorrow."

Hamilton later took to Twitter to apologise to his fans: