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Lewis Hamilton Q&A: I’ve fixed my Monte Carlo weaknesses

23 May 2015

Before this weekend, Monaco was one of just three 2015 circuits at which Lewis Hamilton had never claimed a Grand Prix pole - but after issues at the start of qualifying, he pulled it together to end that run in some style. The secret? According to the Briton, it was all about a change of approach...

Q: Lewis, it took a while for you to claim a maiden Grand Prix pole here - and your first since GP2 in 2006. Why now?

Lewis Hamilton: Good question. I think I had a slightly different approach this weekend. Not that I haven’t been quick here before, but there were always two or three places that I wasn’t getting right. I went into this weekend with the sole objective to fix those weaknesses and used all the practice sessions to do so. Finally I’ve got it. I went out in Q1 and Q2 to see that I was quicker in these areas – and it worked! (laughs)

Q: It seemed that you lost a bit in Q2 - what did you change in Q3 to get back on track in terms of securing pole?

LH: As funny as it may sound, Q3 was the only smooth session that I had. The two others weren’t clean sessions in terms of traffic and everything coming together. The danger in such a situation is that if you don’t get into the right rhythm in Q1 and Q2 it is almost impossible to bend it in Q3. Basically I had to press the reset button and just focus on preparing the tyres. And then you go!

Q: You said before that you want to strive for perfection this weekend. What else can we expect then from you?

LH: You really never have the perfect weekend. But pole and a win would be the closest thing to that. In a perfect weekend you ace every session. But as I said pole and the win - that would be good enough for me. I have always been quick in the race here but sometimes I have not been able to get by - it is hard to do so when not starting from pole and with only one pit stop. But now I hope that I can capitalise on pole position.

Q: Given the fact the start is possibly the only opportunity for your rivals to overtake you, will you approach it differently than at other circuits?

LH: Not really. At every start you want to maximise your chances. You always want to gain metres - or at least maintain your position. So I want to make sure that I at least do one of the two.

Q: Where were the places you were weak in the past?

LH: That I would rather not tell!

Q: Your time on the supersoft tyres this weekend has been very brief. What have you learned anyway?

LH: Both tyres are very similar. It is the same difference that you see in any other race generally. It was a bit tricky in the afternoon to get to the right temperature, which is why we had to do an out lap and a warm-up lap before the fast lap. But we know now how to deal with it. My guess is that the softs will go a long way. That is why I believe that we should be in a good position.