'We couldn't have expected this' says Hamilton of Hungary pole

Hungarian Grand Prix: Second placed Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Mercedes AMG F1 in qualifying parc ferme with team mate and pole sitter Lewis Hamilton
© XPB 

Lewis Hamilton claimed his sixth Hungarian Grand Prix pole position and his fifth of the 2018 season after a wildly unpredictable qualifying session hit by storms and heavy rain.

It's also another front row lockout for Mercedes, with his team mate Valtteri Bottas securing second place ahead of the Ferrari duo of Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel.

"It's great for the team to have a 1-2," Hamilton said after the end of the session. "We couldn't have expected this!"

It had indeed been some way from what the Silver Arrows pair had been envisaging on Saturday.

A tough time on Friday and spins for both drivers during the earlier final practice session made it look like they had been going into the session on the back foot.

They had been helped by the conditions, with the team ensuring that they were among the final cars to complete their final flying laps at the end of a rain-hit Q3 at the Hungaroring.

"The Ferraris have been quicker all weekend and we were just trying to be as close to them as possible," Hamilton admitted. "But the heavens opened and it was fair game.

"It is so tricky out there. At the beginning it was dry for a part of the lap, and then it was getting more and more wet.

"It was really difficult to arrive in the corner and know what grip you have. That was massively challenging.

"Then when it got extreme you're just looking for a clean line and really tiptoeing around the corners.

"It's a bit like doing ballet," he suggested. "Not that I've done ballet, but you know what I mean. You're tiptoeing and feeling the movement of the car.

"It's all about give and take, each time as you're going around, each corner," he added. "I was up, I was down, I was up, I was down. It was an emotional roller coaster."

Now the team's focus turns to making the most of its unexpected but hard-fought good fortune in qualifying, by converting it to a strong showing on Sunday.

"We've got a great position. "We're going to do our best to work as a team and keep the red guys behind us."

Bottas said that he was happy to be on the front row alongside Hamilton, but also disappointed after briefly thinking that he'd done enough to claim pole position for himself.

"Crossing the line being on the pole, then obviously Lewis had a little bit better lap in the end," he sighed.

"It was really crucial. We only had one go on that new set of tyres," he added. "He was quicker on that lap.

"Obviously he was also later as well, so the track was all the time drying up," he pointed out. "But as a team, you know, for us 1-2 - it could have been worse today here!"

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