Sabato, 20 Aprile, 2019

Hamilton on pole in Canada to equal Senna's haul

Lewis Hamilton GETTY Lewis Hamilton was fastest in opening practice in Canada
Pammachio Corsino | 11 Giugno, 2017, 07:07

Hamilton was presented with the distinctive yellow and green helmet, worn by Senna at the 1987 British Grand Prix, as a gift on behalf of the Brazilian's family just moments after he reached the landmark.

"I knew that number 65 was there in the waiting", said Hamilton.

"Ayrton was my favourite driver".

"I'm expecting an interesting weekend". I remember coming home from school and putting on video tape of Ayrton so it is really unusual to think that now I'm here and I have that many poles. I remember coming home from school and putting on a video tape of Ayrton, so it's really odd to think that now I'm here and I have that many poles. The first sector was fantastic and then I managed to be just a little bit up on each one. "It is true that we faced tough competition, but we could have been closer".

"I am looking forward to tomorrow, I am sure we're going to have a very close race. Thank-you to the Senna family".

Had Senna been watching, he would have been proud of his disciple.

"It appears the Ferrari is an easier vehicle". And he admitted that if it couldn't happen in Monte Carlo, there was no better place to equal Senna than here.

The pole, which left him three adrift of Schumacher's all-time record of 68, came 10 years on from the first of his Formula One career at the same track with McLaren in his rookie 2007 season.

"I went for a banker lap and it was great and then I knew I had fuel for just one more lap and I worked the tyre hard and it worked perfectly".

But the success did not come without a fight.

A third practice is to run Saturday morning ahead of Qualifying in the afternoon.


Canada has proven to be a happy stomping ground for Hamilton in the past and so it proved again on Saturday following a thrilling qualifying session. The Ferrari had looked the quicker auto during final practice, but in qualifying Hamilton improved by over a second to take pole. Until Hamilton unleased a stupendous lap on his first run in the final session. Also keep an eye on Max Verstappen making an aggressive move on Kimi Raikkonen and Valtteri Bottas on the inside of Turn 1.

Sebastian Vettel, fourth in the qualifying statistics with 47, will leave Montreal with the championship lead no matter what the result on Sunday.

The top three returned for a second run, but without changing the order while behind them Russian Daniil Kvyat hit the wall with his Toro Rosso.

"It was a sexy lap!"

"I've got the stamp, I posted it the other day", he said, before a prod from Vettel at his side made him see the unintended pun. "I plan on getting there but that is all ifs and buts".

"The problem was when you try to do consecutive laps, with traffic, it's not ideal".

"It's been a pretty good first day for the team", he said.

"I am so happy", said a delighted Hamilton. A fuming Grosjean went on to spin once more at Turn 2, albeit through suspected driver error on that occasion. I would have loved to have had a better lap at the end, but that's the way it is. We are racing for fifth, but it has been like this all season so it doesn't really change. It has been close everywhere except maybe Monaco.

When asked if equalling Schumacher would mean as much, he said: I haven't got there so I can not really say.I can not really look that far ahead I have to be grateful and appreciate this moment.

While Mercedes have claimed the label of underdogs, they displayed plenty of bite on the Montreal track with Hamilton and Bottas swapping spots at the top of the timing charts through much of the session.

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