Lewis Hamilton thinks that he was”really unlucky” to not pip Charles Leclerc to Italian GP post – but says he is enjoying the”exciting” duel with Ferrari in Monza.
Together with the final laps of Q3 destroyed by the farcical struggle to get a tow round F1’s fastest lap, the struggle for pole was finally settled by the very first Q3 runs – that Leclerc gained from Mercedes’ Hamilton with a mere 0.036s and Valtteri Bottas from 0.047s.
But Bottas and Hamilton suspect rod might have been theirs had they not had to lift if KimI Raikkonen crashed at the Parabolica ahead of them. When it spun off hamilton was supporting the Alfa Romeo.
“I was very unfortunate,” Hamilton told Sky Sports F1. “I was just behind Kimi for my very first lap. I started so that I caught him, the lap somewhat too near. With a car you have to generate a gap for the tow.
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“I started catching him through the corners and that I was thinking’don’t grab him too far’ and I got into the last corner and he spun, and so I had to lift. With that lift I’d have lost half per week plus it might have bene the gap between rod and instant.
Nevertheless, the championship leader stated:”But that is exiting. I really like that it’s that close and it is not multiple tenths.”
Leclerc vs Hamilton compared
In side-by-side SkyPad analysis of Leclerc and Hamilton’s laps, Anthony Davidson shows how the Mercedes was fractionally before Ferrari starting the backstraight which heads into the Parabolica – then was still level pegging exiting the final turn despite inevitably having to facilitate away for Raikkonen.
From the video over, Sky F1’s Davidson says:”Raikkonen spins out in front and Lewis certainly has to back out of that ever so slightly.
“On the exit, even though a car spinning facing him clearly having to back out, the additional speed that the Mercedes inherently has beneath it as it moves through a high-profile corner is enough to maintain him pretty level pegging with the Ferrari.
“Unfortunately for him, onto that [pit] right, only at the end that is what made the difference.”
Meanwhile, Leclerc stated he hadn’t been pleased.
“Mercedes were quick, we had been very fast also,” the Ferrari driver stated.
“My lap was not special. I was way too close to Hulkenberg. At the corners I was shedding a lot, although the slipstream was excellent. It was not ideal, I was far too close.”
Hamilton and Bottas begin between the two Ferraris on Sunday’s grid along with the Englishman said:”I am very happy we enhanced the automobile bit by bit during the weekend and was able to get quite close to the Ferraris that is great.”
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