Mercedes’ Toto Wolff: “P1 and P3 are very good starting positions”

by Paul Hensby

Toto Wolff said the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team could feel happy with the outcome of Qualifying for the United States Grand Prix, despite Sebastian Vettel getting in between Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas.

Hamilton secured his eleventh Pole Position of the season and the seventy-second of his career with a storming lap of 1:33.108s, but Bottas ended up 0.460 seconds back in third, which allowed Scuderia Ferrari’s Vettel to split them and deny the team a front row lock-out.

Neither driver managed to improve on their opening salvo on their second runs in the top ten shoot-out, but Wolff, the Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport, says their respective grid slots offer a great opportunity for the team for a strong result.

“That was an unusual end to the qualifying session, with neither driver improving on the final run, but we must be very happy with that pole position,” said Wolff.

“Lewis has been faultless in the past few races and this was another great lap – it’s a strong circuit for him and he has enjoyed a healthy advantage all weekend.

“Valtteri made good progress with the car overnight and was much closer in qualifying than yesterday in practice; but he couldn’t make another step on the final lap, so was beaten to the front row by Vettel.

“This just shows the fine margins that we are working with when it comes to putting every piece of the puzzle together. However, P1 and P3 are very good starting positions to have a strong race tomorrow.”

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