Nico Rosberg has beaten Lewis Hamilton to pole position for the sixth race in a row for Sunday’s season finale in Abu Dhabi. The German beat his team-mate by 0.377 seconds on his last lap.
Through-out the session the times switch between the Mercedes duo. On his first run the German was quicker but then Hamilton responded which wasn’t enough to hold off Rosberg.
The man, who was expected to be able to challenge the Mercedes Sebastian Vettel, was a shock departure in Q1. Vettel expected to get through the session using the soft tyres so he backed off but late improvements meant he couldn’t respond when most went out on the super soft tyres.
Rosberg said “Before it was close in the other direction and now it’s close in this direction. I am quicker at the moment and I am pleased about that and happy to be on pole again.”
His team-mate Kimi Raikkonen had his best session in a while by qualifying third. Sergio Perez continued the strong performance that Force India has had this weekend to qualify fourth while his team-mate Nico Hulkenberg was seventh.
This weekend has been a surprise with Force India running ahead of Williams constantly. This may allow the British-Indian team to be in a chance of getting a podium during the race however the team looks unlikely to be able to take their first win under this name. The Silverstone based team last won as Jordan in 2003.
Vettel wasn’t the only multiple world champion to lose out to a single world champion team-mate as Fernando Alonso also failed to make it through to Q2. Jenson Button made it in to Q2 finishing the session behind Max Verstappen in twelfth place.
The Q2 session was the same story with the Mercedes duo trading times with Hamilton and Rosberg trading times with Hamilton coming out on top. But both were comfortably ahead of the Ferrari.
The battle to make it through to the final session fell to the Toro Rosso’s with Carlos Sainz knocking Max Verstappen out.