Lewis Hamilton was unable to claim the much-coveted pole position for the Singapore Grand Prix despite leading Q3 for much of the session.
He described the dramatic session as “challenging” in the changing conditions, and he thought that the battle for pole still “was on” for Mercedes.
The Englishman established the early pace on the soft tyres and thereby grabbed provisional pole over Max Verstappen by nearly half a second.
However, he missed out on winning pole position by just 0.054s thanks to late improvements from Charles Leclerc and Sergio Perez.
In a conversation with Sky Sports F1, Hamilton said: “It was such a challenge, in FP2 the car didn’t feel so great so we made some changes overnight obviously, none of us got a real good running in FP3.”
He added: “But as soon as I saw that we were kind of fighting for that front row I was thinking ‘Oh my god, maybe it’s on today!’ and how we’re just trying to squeeze out everything.
“That’s the closest I’ve had that hope in terms of getting on the front row this year, so to be off a tenth off there was definitely half a tenth there left on track.
“So disgusted in one sense, but also I’m grateful in another.”