Lewis secured pole position in stunning style at Silverstone...
- Lewis edged Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen in the third and final practice session on Saturday morning, putting in a 1:26.722 on Soft tyres to set the benchmark.
- Valtteri's best lap of 1:27.364 was also set on the Soft compound and was good enough for P3 on the leaderboard. He completed 16 laps in FP3, two more than Lewis.
- Both drivers progressed through to the top 10 shootout, setting their best Q2 times on the Soft tyre - which they will start the race on.
- Lewis trailed Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel after the first attempts in Q3, with the gap between them being just 0.057s.
- However, he dug deep and found time on his final run, putting in a 1:25.892 to secure pole position on home soil - setting a new track record at Silverstone.
- Lewis also set a new record for most British GP poles, six, and clinches his 50th pole position with the Mercedes F1 team.
- Valtteri set a 1:26.217 on his first attempt but failed to improve on his second run, qualifying in fourth.
What Did We Learn?
"Yesterday's free practice running proved an extremely accurate portent of what we saw today," explained Technical Director James Allison.
"It looked very tight at the front on Friday and so it proved in qualifying: it needed a very good lap from Lewis to put the car on pole and, save for an error in the final corners, Valtteri would have been just behind.
"If Friday's running proves as accurate a gauge of tomorrow's relative performance as it did for today's, then we are in for a tight and tough afternoon, when strategy and tyre management will play vital parts in who gets to the lift the silverware at the end.
"The car performed well in the heat on the long runs and we hope we can achieve the same level of performance, or more, when it counts."
What We’re Saying
Lewis: "That lap took everything out of me, it was the toughest lap I've ever had to do in a qualifying session.
"I had to go over the limit to get that time out of the car and I could have easily not pulled that lap together, so I'm thankful that I was able to do it.
"I knew that the fans were right there with me; every time I go out I see them cheering. The support I get at this track is phenomenal; it means the world to me and it really lifts me up.
"The start and the tyre management will be key for the race; I'm going to see my guys tonight and tell them to keep pushing so that we're as good as we can get tomorrow."
Valtteri: "I'm disappointed - our pace was good today and it was all going well for me, but I lost it in the last two corners.
"I went a bit too deep into Turn 16, lost a few tenths there and dropped to fourth. Without that mistake I think I would have been fighting for pole today.
"The Ferraris looked strong yesterday already and it was very close today between us and them, so I expect a similarly close fight tomorrow.
"It's not going to be easy to pass them tomorrow, but we've seen overtaking on this track before, so there's still opportunity for more.
"We saw blistering last week in Austria, so keeping the tyres in good condition is going to be the key tomorrow given the high temperatures. It is going to be a long and hot race, a tough battle, but I'm looking forward to it."
Toto: "You probably can't ask for anything more from a qualifying session than to have three cars within a tenth of a second at the front.
"The atmosphere this afternoon was incredible: every time Lewis passed, you could hear the crowd cheering above the noise of the cars, and that support probably made the difference today.
"In the end, he was just 44 thousandths ahead of Sebastian - and Valtteri could have been right in the mix as well, apart from a mistake in the last corners that cost him over two tenths.
"We know already that it will be a tough race tomorrow, and especially so with two Ferraris starting right behind Lewis.
"There is everything still to play for and we will have to be at our very best as a team if we wish to come out on top."