Valtteri Bottas said it was a “great feeling” to secure a second successive pole position after pipping Lewis Hamilton in the other Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team car by 0.172 seconds.
The Finn was quicker in the first run of Q3 and neither him, or Hamilton could improve with their second runs as the Mercedes were in a league of their own at the Yas Marina Circuit.
“It’s only the fourth pole of my career and I had to beat some pretty good qualifiers, so it’s a great feeling to start from P1 tomorrow.” Said Bottas. “It was a really good qualifying, clean and smooth.”
Bottas admitted to having to make changes to the car from free practice to help him extract more pace from his Mercedes.
“With the changes we made, the car was behaving much better in qualifying than it did in free practice.
“Run after run, I could always find some time here and there, I really worked on the details.”
The Mercedes driver started on pole last time out in Brazil and will get another opportunity to get a third win of the season.
“We were nearly there in Sao Paulo and now I get a second opportunity.” Said Bottas. “It would mean a lot to end the season on a high.
“However, no matter how tomorrow goes, it will be nice to head into the winter break knowing that I had the speed to be on pole two races in a row.”