Mercedes aim to gain positions during race
Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg qualified in fourth and sixth places for the Malaysian Grand Prix this afternoon., confirming the positive trend in performance for the Mercedes AMG team.
Both drivers completed one run on the hard compound tyre in Q1 and one run on the medium compound in Q2. With rain starting to fall during the second qualifying session, Q3 required the use of intermediates tyres. Lewis and Nico used one set of intermediates for the session and finished in P4 and P6 respectively
Lewis Hamilton, F1 W04 / 04, 4th: "I'm pretty happy with fourth place considering the conditions today. The car was not too bad in the dry but the balance could have been a lot better, then it was pretty tricky conditions in the wet during Q3. We did our lap with older tyres than the guys in front, which was a bit unfortunate, but our pace was good overall so I can't complain. It's the second race on the second row for me and there are lots of positives to take out of the weekend so far. Our long run pace looked pretty good compared to the other teams so I'm hoping for dry conditions tomorrow.
Nico Rosberg, F1 W04 /03, 6th: "In the dry conditions I had a great balance today and everything went perfectly which was nice to see. Once it began to rain unfortunately we weren't able to get the most out of the car and at the end of Q3, my tyres were worn as some parts of the track were drying and I wasn't able to improve my lap time. We have a good car for the race and a strong starting position from the third row of the grid so I'm looking forward to tomorrow. We should have some good opportunities and will need to make sure that we make the most of them."
Ross Brawn, Team principal: "An exciting qualifying session this afternoon with the threat of the weather conditions changing. The car was well balanced on both dry compounds and the intermediate tyres, and we made a pretty good job of judging the conditions. Clearly there was an opportunity at the end to put a second set of intermediates on and potentially go faster but it could have gone either way. Both Lewis and Nico are in good positions for the race and the car seems to be in reasonable shape so we look forward to tomorrow and whatever the weather decides to throw at us."
Toto Wolff, Executive director: "That was a tricky qualifying session, particularly in Q3 when it may have been better to run a second set of new intermediate tyres - but it's easy to be wise after the fact. The reality today is that we have shown our trend is positive, we got a solid result with both cars in the top six and the team delivered a solid performance. We have spent the entire weekend working on our performance for Sunday, not Saturday, and we hope that we can confirm our positive trend tomorrow."