Lewis Hamilton was untouchable in qualifying for the Malaysian Grand Prix on Saturday as he secured his fifty-seventh pole position of his career ahead of team-mate and championship rival Nico Rosberg.
The Mercedes AMG PETRONAS driver’s first lap of 1:32.850 in Q3 was enough to see him beat Rosberg by a commanding 0.414 seconds, and Hamilton was delighted that he was able to recover from a disappointing weekend in Singapore two weeks ago to be on the pace all weekend long at the Sepang International Circuit.
“It feels great. I’m incredibly grateful for the car being where it is,” said Hamilton. “The guys have done a great job for us to have such performance this weekend.
“To be able to extract it from the car is the thing I’m really happy about. It’s been night and day in comparison to Singapore. Of the laps I had there, I only really got a few of them together. Here, though, we’ve had lots of mileage, I’ve been able to build through the sessions and I felt really comfortable in the car.
“Again, great work from the guys in the garage – just like they have been doing all year.”
Hamilton felt there was even more time to be found in qualifying after making a mistake on his second flying lap as the clock ticked towards zero, and with the performance he has shown throughout the weekend in Sepang so far, he hopes it continues onto race day on Sunday.
“My final qualifying lap was the first lock-up I’d had all weekend into Turn One, so there was more time out there,” said Hamilton. “It’s a shame I didn’t get to show it but I still got pole and it’s looking good for tomorrow.
“I’ve been here since last Saturday, so I’ve been able to prepare really well and I’ve been pretty quick all weekend. It’s too soon to say how the race will go. When I’m on top of it like I have been this weekend, it generally goes my way on a Sunday. Let’s hope that pattern continues.”