Lewis Hamilton felt glad to have done the home fans at Silverstone proud by bouncing back from a track limits scare to score pole position for the British Grand Prix.
A three-time winner at Silverstone, Hamilton looked set to capture pole position after posting a new qualifying lap record for the current track layout at the start of Q3.
However, Hamilton’s time was deleted after he was found to have exceeded track limits at Copse, handing Rosberg the advantage.
“The penultimate lap was a very good lap. Unfortunately it was taken away,” Hamilton said.
“I touched the kerb and it just pulled me further. I didn’t feel like I was going to be be running wide, but the car bottomed kind of bounced just outside the line.”
Hamilton was left with one all-or-nothing lap to beat Rosberg, during which he duly went three-tenths of a second faster than the German to secure pole for the British Grand Prix.
“A lot of pressure for that final lap. I was sitting in the garage knowing i couldn’t let the guys down because on the first lap I had,” Hamilton said.
“The second lap wasn’t as good, but I was making sure I was cautious, making sure I got the lap in.
“I’m grateful that I did and really again thank you also to all my team who have done an amazing job to have the performance we have this weekend. It’s outstanding.”
Hamilton paid tribute to the fans that had turned out in droves to cheer him on in qualifying.
“I want to say how amazing and grateful I am for all the fans that are here this weekend,” Hamilton said.
“From Thursday until today, just the biggest crowd that I think I’ve ever seen. The energy and the wave that they send is just mesmirising, so a big thank you to everyone that is out there and for the positive energy.”
Following the clash between Hamilton and Rosberg on the last lap of the Austrian Grand Prix, Mercedes issued a new ‘rules of engagement’ with both drivers earlier this week to prevent a repeat.
With the Silver Arrows locking out the front row, Hamilton was asked whether Mercedes had cleared up any confusion regarding the inevitable battle at the start of the race.
“Yeah, I didn’t think there was anything that needed to be cleared up anyway,” Hamilton said.
“We’ll just get on with out job. There’s a lot way to go. I will try not to be in that position again.
“I can’t speak for him, but I’m sure Nico will do the same.”
The British Grand Prix is live on CNBC and the NBC Sports App from 7:30am ET on Sunday.