Lewis Hamilton has beaten his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg to take pole position for the Bahrain Grand Prix. The world champion was .08 of a second faster than Rosberg in the controversial knock-out format.
Unlike in Melbourne there was more action towards the end of the session. Ferrari looked strong with Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen within a second of the Mercedes best time. The closing moments of the session was all about the fight between the two teams.
Hamilton who also broke the lap record said “I was struggling to put laps together. It’s actually the only lap I’ve put together all weekend, and it was the last one. I hope that’s the first of many.”
Daniel Ricciardo was the best of the rest qualifying fifth fastest for Red Bull ahead of Valtteri Bottas and his Williams team-mate Valtteri Bottas.
Hamilton was out paced by Rosberg thought the practice sessions but when it mattered he proved he was king. Vettel couldn’t show on his final run whether he had the pace to beat the Mercedes after he made a mistake at the last corner. But going on the gap he could still push the silver arrows in the race on Sunday.
Stoffel Vandoorne put in a good performance to out qualify his team-mate Jenson Button. The Belgian rookie will start eleventh which has to be brilliant for him after no preparation ahead of the weekend after being brought in on Thursday to replace Fernando Alonso.
Manor’s Pascal Wehrlien put in a good performance to just miss out on Q2 and being ahead of his team-mate Rio Haryanto, both Sauber’s of Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr, both Renault’s of Kevin Magnussen and Jolyon Palmer.
However, Magnussen must start from the pit lane after missing a weight check in FP2.
Daniil Kyvat was the first to be knocked out in the second session while Brit Jolyon Palmer starts nineteenth