F1: Rosberg takes pole position for Mexican Grand Prix
Nico Rosberg will start from pole position for Sunday’s Mexican Grand Prix at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.
This weekend marks the first time that Formula One has raced in Mexico since 1992, and speeds have been topping over 225 mph down the front straight.
The two Mercedes switched the top times throughout Q3 but it was Rosberg who claimed pole with a 1:19.480, while Hamilton was in second, 0.188 seconds back.
Sebastian Vettel slotted his Ferrari into third position ahead of the two Red Bulls and Williams cars, with Max Verstappen in eighth ahead of the two Force Indias.
Rain began falling in the closing moments of Q2 but Felipe Massa and Max Verstappen were still able to put on fast laps in the closing moments, bumping Carlos Sainz Jr. (Toro Rosso), Romain Grosjean and Pastor Maldonado (Lotus), Marcus Ericsson (Sauber) and Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari).
Kimi Raikkonen spun late on during Q2 and returned to the pits with an apparent brake issue. He qualified 15th but will start in 19th ahead of the two McLarens after a 35-spot grid penalty.
Felipe Nasr of Sauber was knocked out in Q1 as were the two Manor Marussias and McLarens.
Jenson Button had mechanical gremlins on his McLaren-Honda during morning practice, which were unable to get resolved in time, and so the Brit did not turn a lap in qualifying. Button had earned 70 positions worth of grid penalties prior to qualifying and so would have to start at the back anyway.
Full qualifying results:
1. Nico Rosberg - Mercedes
2. Lewis Hamilton - Mercedes
3. Sebastian Vettel - Ferrari
4. Daniil Kvyat - Red Bull
5. Daniel Ricciardo - Red Bull
6. Valtteri Bottas - Williams
7. Felipe Massa - Williams
8. Max Verstappen - Toro Rosso
9. Sergio Perez - Force India
10. Nico Hulkenberg - Force India
11. Carlos Sainz Jr. - Toro Rosso
12. Romain Grosjean - Lotus
13. Pastor Maldonado - Lotus
14. Marcus Ericsson - Sauber
15. Felipe Nasr - Sauber
16. Alexander Rossi - Manor
17. Will Stevens - Manor
18. Fernando Alonso - McLaren*
19. Kimi Raikkonen - Ferrari**
20. Jenson Button - McLaren***
* Fernando Alonso qualified 16th but will receive a 10-place grid penalty
** Kimi Raikkonen qualified 15th but will receive a 35-place grid penalty
*** Jenson Button did not turn a lap during qualifying and has a 70-place grid penalty