• Hungarian Grand Prix - Qualifying

Red Bull pace 'insane' - Hamilton

ESPNF1 Staff
July 31, 2010 « 'We maximised our potential', says Alonso | »
Lewis Hamilton is pinning his hopes on a good start from fifth © Getty Images

Lewis Hamilton said he could only laugh at the speed of the Red Bulls during qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix, after his best time was over 1.7 seconds shy of Sebastian Vettel's pole lap.

Red Bull has had the upper hand all weekend while McLaren has struggled around the tight and twisty Hungaroring circuit. Through the middle sector alone, Vettel was over a second up on Hamilton and the championship leader was at a loss to explain the difference.

"We look at the onboard footage and we just laugh, Jenson and I just think that it's insane how fast they go," Hamilton admitted to TV crews after the session. "Our car is the best it's ever been at this circuit, but those guys [Red Bull] ... I don't know what the hell they are doing because it's incredible the pace they have."

He said his fifth place on the grid was the best he could have hoped for given the performance of the MP4-25.

"It was really my target," he said. "Although your target is always pole, we knew that the Red Bulls were impossible to beat, they were 1.7 seconds ahead which is incredible. With the Ferraris, I saw that Massa was just ahead of me and it was possible to get very close to him but I don't think it was possible to be ahead of him.

"I'm happy with that result, I was relieved to get into Q3 - it was very close. Then I feel I pulled absolutely every inch out of the car and I'm happy with the job I did."

He said that the race would be tough but that a good start from the clean side of the grid could put him in contention for a podium.

"Obviously we've got to work hard but that's a good position for us to start tomorrow, on the cleaner side [of the grid], that's a positive for the start," he said. "It's a long haul down to the turn one so anything is possible and I feel quite happy.

"We need to get as good a start as we have had at the last few races and stay clean through the first corner but, as always, move forward. If we can make a step forward up to fourth or third it would be spectacular because you can't overtake here. I can imagine it will be a very hard race if I do have a Ferrari behind me but we're ready for it."