MONTREAL, June 08, 2013 (AFP) - Beseiged Mercedes team chief Ross Brawn was delighted with his team's efforts on Saturday despite their disappointment in failing to land a fifth successive pole position in qualifying for the Canadian Grand Prix.
Brawn, who had guided Lewis Hamilton, the 2008 champion, to pole in China and then seen his team-mate Nico Rosberg reel off three in a row in Bahrain, Spain and Monaco, praised his team.
He said: "It all got a bit tricky right at the end, as very few were improving.
"And it's been a long time since we have done a whole qualifying session on the intermediates. There were lots of traps we could fall into but I was pleased with the way the team dealt with it."
Earlier he welcomed the team's appearance before the International Tribunal of the sport's ruling body, the International Motoring Federation (FIA) later this month as a chance to clear their name against allegations of taking part illegally in a secret in-season test using a 2013-spec car.
Looking ahead to the race, he said: "I think the big issues tomorrow will be abrasion or graining. We're probably going to face a track which we've not experienced all weekend. If you get it slightly wrong, you'll get abrasion. It won't be the tyres wearing out, you'll just lose performance."
Rosberg, who had started has started the last three races on pole, was not happy with fourth.
He said: "It's not so nice, because the car felt good today. The big excuse today is that the radio wasn't working.
"In these conditions, you need the radio working. At the very end, I didn't know I had three laps. On the last lap, I thought it was finished and then I got stuck behind a Lotus. It's very disappointing."
Hamilton said he was satisfied with second after making a minor error on a late lap.
He added: "We don't have any tyre degradation. When you compare the long runs, it looks like Ferrari and Red Bull were half a second quicker on their long runs, but we don't know about fuel loads.
"Our car felt great yesterday, so hopefully tomorrow is dry and we can have a good shot."