Lewis Hamilton was relatively happy with his lap time during qualifying for the German Grand Prix on Saturday, even if it meant he was forced to settle for second behind Mercedes AMG PETRONAS team-mate Nico Rosberg.
Hamilton lost out on top spot to his team-mate by just 0.107 seconds, but felt it was the final sector that cost him the pole, feeling he was on course to top the session in the opening part of the lap.
“There was nothing particularly wrong today,” said Hamilton. “My final lap just didn’t work out. It was pretty close out there and sometimes you get it right, sometimes you don’t.
“The car was feeling great. The team did a great job to get it where I needed it to be and it was definitely on for pole. I was two tenths up coming out of T2 – but from T8 onwards it started to deteriorate and I couldn’t maintain the gap.”
Hamilton knows it is possible to pass on the Hockenheim circuit, having started at the rear of the field in 2014 and finishing on the podium, and believes that he can take the fight to team-mate Rosberg on Sunday as he looks to extend his championship lead.
“I’ve missed out on pole, so I didn’t do what I was supposed to do – but it’s in the past now, so you just let it go and look forwards,” said Hamilton. “It doesn’t mean the race isn’t there to win tomorrow. I’ll try to get a good start and see how it goes from there.
“I don’t know what the strategy will be – we’ll look through that tonight. But this is a track where you can overtake, so I don’t have to go for it at the first corner. It can be somewhere else.
“The pace is clearly there, so it’s still been a good day and I’m generally pretty happy. Hopefully tomorrow I’ll be able to do something from where I am. I’m just focused on trying to move forward and if I can drive like I have done in the past few races then anything can happen.”