• Indian Grand Prix - Qualifying

Hamilton surprised by Merc positions

ESPN Staff
October 26, 2013 « Rosberg 'completely on a knife's edge' | Alonso eyeing 'random' victory chance »
Both Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg were surprised to qualify in the top three © Sutton Images

Lewis Hamilton says he is surprised to have both Mercedes cars starting in the top three for the Indian Grand Prix.

Although Sebastian Vettel took a comfortable pole position, Hamilton will start from third place behind team-mate Nico Rosberg. Hamilton said the team has been working hard having been expecting a difficult weekend and therefore the high grid positions had come as a welcome bonus.

"I certainly wasn't expecting it," Hamilton said. "It looked pretty tough, we've had a tough weekend trying to set the car up and really trying to squeeze every little drop out of the car. But the team has done a great job and we've worked well with our engineers, so I really was surprised to see us on the first and second row but it's good.

"I hope that puts us in a good position for tomorrow. It's going to be interesting on strategy; none of us will see Sebastian after the first corner unless we jump him at the start which is unlikely, but we'll try our best.

"You saw in the last race we got a better start than Red Bull so fingers crossed it's going to be something like that this weekend. But then you have the long, long straight down the back so you never know how it's going to go."

Hamilton even felt he could have outqualified Rosberg but lost a bit of time on his final qualifying lap.

"Through turns 8 and 9 I did have somebody in front of me; I don't know who it was because I was so focused on the road. It might have been [Vettel], it may have been one of the Red Bulls but I probably didn't lose too much time."

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