• German Grand Prix - Qualifying

Hamilton 'overwhelmed' with Germany pole

ESPN Staff
July 6, 2013 « Williams hit with KERS failure in garage | Webber aims for victory from third on the grid »
Lewis Hamilton improved his best time by 1.3s from FP3 to qualifying © Sutton Images
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Lewis Hamilton described his pole position at the German Grand Prix as "really overwhelming" following struggles in practice at the Nurburgring.

In the final practice session on Saturday morning Hamilton complained that "I can't drive the car now; the car is just so unstable at the rear," as he ended FP3 1.2s slower than Sebastian Vettel. However, Hamilton recovered to beat Vettel to pole by 0.1s and he said the result was down to a lot of hard work by Mercedes to turn around the situation.

"It's really overwhelming because I've been struggling since the first run in P1 - which was pretty good - but P2 and P3 were just disasters and it got even worse this morning," Hamilton said. "We were miles off, a good 0.8s off and I wasn't comfortable with the car at all. We went back to the truck, worked hard, tried to analyse everything, made lots and lots of changes and I just hoped that it would work.

"Fortunately the car was beneath me and I was able to put in the times that we did. I'm grateful for the work the guys did with me and this is just down to all the hard work that the team has been putting in."

With so many changes made before qualifying, Hamilton admitted that he does have a slight question mark over how his race pace will be.

"Obviously there are no points for today, tomorrow's the important day. [Red Bull] are very good on their long runs, hopefully my new set-up will be as good and we can give them a run for their money."

Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg dropped out in Q2 as the team decided to do only one run, and Hamilton admitted he'd expected Rosberg to beat him going in to qualifying.

"It was a big surprise, Nico's been extremely quick all weekend and I anticipated that he would most likely outqualify me today and be up here where we are now. Obviously he was only 0.2s off the pace compared to my lap and the track did ramp up so that was a real surprise and I think that caught us out a little bit."