It's a great feeling to be on pole here at Monza and I'm really excited for the race tomorrow. It's also a relief to have had a clean qualifying session, my first for quite a while! Big thanks to my guys in the garage, I'm very proud of the way they've worked this year and dealt with all our ups and downs, they've done a great job. It's business as usual tomorrow, we're free to race and I hope we get a strong result for the team, hopefully a one-two. The other Mercedes-powered cars are looking strong here as well so it should be an exciting race. I'm looking forward to it.
Thank you to the boys, they did a great job making my car ready for Qualifying. Also, overnight we improved the set-up a lot with the engineering support from Brackley, therefore I felt a lot better in the car today compared to yesterday. Today Lewis was quicker, but starting from second place is still a very good position to win here at Monza. I will need a good start and good race pace, but I'm quite confident to get it all right tomorrow. So I'm very much looking forward to the race. Monza has always a great atmosphere and it's so great to drive this great track with our phenomenal Silver Arrow.
That was a strong team performance today. When it came down to the final laps and the drivers had to lay it all on the line, Lewis delivered a special second sector while Nico had a small snap in the Ascari chicane. At this level, it’s small things like that which make the difference. Congratulations to the whole team after an intensive weekend and a special word, too, for our colleagues in Brixworth. It’s seriously impressive to see six Mercedes-Benz engines in the top six positions for qualifying at Monza.
Our day did not start well with Nico’s loss of running in third practice, which meant he couldn’t do all the laps he would have liked. We were able to resolve the problem without any penalty, though. This afternoon, we saw a very tense qualifying session. There were a lot of competitive cars out there today, especially the Williams, so we needed the drivers to put together some stunning laps – and that’s exactly what they did. Lewis put together an extraordinary lap on his first run in Q3, then Nico was almost matching that on his second run, if it had not been for a small snap in the Ascari chicane. It’s great to secure the front row once again and to see Mercedes power in the top six positions. We’re now looking forward to a really good race at this iconic circuit, and to putting on a good show for the tifosi in the stands.