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‘Couldn’t have even dreamt’ of 1-2 earlier this season – Russell

Mercedes couldn’t have even dreamt of securing a front row lockout in qualifying earlier this season, according to British Grand Prix polesitter George Russell.

Russell beat teammate Lewis Hamilton to secure his second pole of the season at Silverstone, with Hamilton joining him on the front row ahead of Lando Norris in a British 1-2-3. For Russell, it’s just a third pole position of his career and first at his home race, and he admits it led to a special moment given how competitive Mercedes was in the dry.

“This is definitely one of the best feelings I’ve ever had on a Saturday afternoon,” Russell said. “The car was just insane. When we went out in Q3, it just really came alive and without doubt, one of the best feelings I’ve ever had driving this circuit and crossing the line, seeing my name in P1, and then seeing we’re both on the front row.

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“We couldn’t have even dreamt of that after the first three or four races. Yeah, it feels good.

“It’s been feeling great since Canada when we brought these upgrades. The two of us have been qualifying in the top three consistently, but it really came into its own today. We were really quick in FP1 yesterday. We struggled in FP2 a little bit, but these conditions just really got the car into a perfect window, and the lap was just really, really nice.

“There’s no guarantees for tomorrow, for sure, but we feel like we’re riding this wave at the moment. I mean, obviously, for us as a team, I don’t know when the last time was we were on a front row.”

Russell’s excitement was backed up by Hamilton, who managed to jump Norris with his final attempt to match his best qualifying performance of the season so far.

“It was a great session,” he said. “Naturally, the best session that we’ve had as a team to just have the real pace and be able to actually compete with the McLarens and the Red Bulls, I think is incredibly satisfying — just really a huge boost for the team.

“The car felt great. A huge congratulations to George for getting the pole, but to be on the front row, I think, is massive for our team. So many of them are here this weekend with their families, and it’s been a long time since we’ve had it, so this is a great feeling.”

While Russell believes Norris and Max Verstappen might have a slight advantage in race pace, Hamilton says his focus has been more on how his car performs on Sunday rather than in qualifying.

“I think I was cautious with my set-up, more thinking to have a nice balance in the race rather than all for one particular lap,” he said. “I do think that the car will be good tomorrow.”

Story originally appeared on Racer