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Vettel's admission as Hamilton claims "important" Spanish GP pole

Written by  May 13, 2018

Sebastian Vettel conceded there was nothing he could do to match the pace of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes after the world champion claimed pole position for the Spanish GP.

The Briton would be back to his best as he found time on both his runs in the all-important top 10 shoot-out eventually finishing just four-hundredths clear of teammate Valtteri Bottas, with Vettel a tenth-and-a-half slower in third.

However, the German doesn't see Mercedes returning to the front as a big concern.

“Looking back you have to admit that the last two qualifying sessions, they lost something," he claimed. “If they got that back it doesn’t necessarily mean that they found something, it’s just that they were back to normal.

“I think we need to admit that they were just a bit quicker today. For tomorrow though I think we should be in the mix.”

Tyres were the important factor, with both Ferrari drivers and Daniel Ricciardo setting their best time on the Soft compound while Hamilton was able to get a full lap of performance from the Supersoft.

“It was straightforward [to go back to Softs] because I had such a good feeling in Q2,” he added.

“I asked and we decided to go back to the Softs and I think that was the right call. The lap was good. Maybe there was a tiny bit but not enough to get to the first row.

"On the first Supersoft lap, it just didn’t happen. I locked up into Turn 1 and I never got the grip that I was looking for.”

As for Hamilton, after taking his career tally to 74 poles on Saturday, he admitted this was possibly one of the most "important".

“I needed that pole,” he said with a sigh of relief. "I’ve not had a pole for a while. It was very close but I’m very happy.”

“It’s important for me to get back into a good position in qualifying, it’s usually a strength of mine.”

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