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Lewis Hamilton

Hamilton was 'excited' by arrival of rain for China Sprint Shootout

The Mercedes driver has his best Sprint starting position since the first one with second in the China Sprint Shootout.

Hamilton sprint China
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Lewis Hamilton "came alive" once rain hit Chinese Grand Prix Sprint Shootout qualifying, as he secured his best result since the first Sprint with second on the grid.

In wet and wild conditions, Hamilton appeared on for pole position for Saturday morning's shorter race in SQ3, climbing to the top of the times, especially as Lando Norris's time was deleted for track limits at Turn 16.

However, just as Hamilton appeared to grab his first Sprint pole since the inaugural race at the 2021 British Grand Prix, Norris's time was reinstated by the stewards, with it being an all-British front-row with Fernando Alonso and Max Verstappen slotting in behind.

Hamilton, who is enduring his worst-ever start to an F1 season revealed afterwards of his excitement of the rain arriving.

"It was very tricky conditions, there was not a lot of grip as you saw for everyone," Hamilton explained.

"As soon as I saw the rain coming, I was getting excited because naturally in dry conditions, we are not quick enough, so when the rain came, I kind of thought I would have a bit of an opportunity - and that is when it all came alive.

When asked for how he felt the Sprint would pan out, Hamilton was keen for more wet conditions, fearing his Mercedes W15 would not be able to cope with the Ferrari and Red Bull quartet starting behind.

"[Our Sprint] will really depend on what the conditions will be, if it is like [the Sprint Shootout], then maybe we will have a chance of being up there," he added.

"If it is dry then naturally, the Ferraris and Red Bulls will come by but maybe we can hold off some of the others."

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