Hamilton: Pole in Mexico not crucial

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Lewis Hamilton remains optimistic about his chances in tomorrow’s Mexican Grand Prix despite only qualifying second on Saturday, losing out to Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg.

Hamilton finished less than two-tenths of a second shy of Rosberg with his quickest Q3 lap, handing the German driver his fourth consecutive pole position.

However, after winning the last three races from second on the grid, Hamilton remains relaxed about tomorrow’s race, believing pole to be less crucial at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.

“It was great out there today,” Hamilton said. “I really enjoyed driving and we have an amazing crowd here too. They’re constantly cheering, which is great to see.

“The track got grippier so it was more fun to drive and it was quite a relaxing qualifying session in general, with no real stress.

“At some races pole really makes a difference, but at this one it I don’t really mind being second because it’s a long, long way down to turn one and I plan on getting a good start tomorrow.”

Grip levels have been low all weekend on the newly-resufaced track, and Hamilton is wary of having to start from scratch if the rain some are forecasting hits Mexico City on Saturday night.

“The track is evolving and improving bit by bit,” Hamilton said. “I don’t know if it’s going to rain tonight but, if it does, it will clean the track and then we will be learning again tomorrow so that will be a real challenge.

“We don’t know what kind of strategy it’s going to be or how long the tires will last – we’ll find out tomorrow! I’m looking forward to a good battle as it was very close today.”

The Mexican Grand Prix is live on NBC and Live Extra from 1:30pm ET on Sunday.