Kimi Raikkonen says Monaco GP F1 qualifying was “a disaster”
Ferrari Formula 1 driver Kimi Raikkonen said his Monaco Grand Prix qualifying was a “disaster” as his disappointing form over one lap this season continued.
The Finn has struggled to put together a tidy lap in qualifying this year and he is the only driver in 2015 to have not out-qualified his team-mate at least once.
Raikkonen will start Sunday’s race from sixth, having finished 1.3s off pole and six tenths adrift of team-mate Sebastian Vettel, who starts third.
“It was a bad result in the end as it’s difficult to overtake here,” said Raikkonen. “It’s not a very happy day.
“It’s going to be a long race if I’m stuck behind some cars, but I’ll try to get the maximum out of it.
“We had no grip on the first set [for the first run]. The second run felt normal but I had traffic.
“It was a disaster. The car felt OK but it was difficult to get heat in the tyres.”
Raikkonen hit the wall at Ste Devote in third practice but he insisted that had no impact on his performance in qualifying.
However, he said the team must get to the bottom of his qualifying struggles because it is making life in the race more difficult than it needs to be.
“We seem to manage to get it wrong every race,” he said. “We have to work on something to try and improve it.
“We don’t put ourselves in very good position for Sunday.
“It makes our races difficult when you start behind because you spend time trying to get past cars and then you drop out the fight in front.”
Ferrari looked strong in final practice, with Vettel topping the timesheets, but the temperatures dropped before qualifying which hindered the Scuderia.
But despite failing to prevent a Mercedes front row lock-out, Vettel is hopeful the team will be closer in the race.
“With higher temperatures, it could have been closer,” said Vettel.
“As it stands, we were quite far away again but tomorrow, we should be a bit closer.
“We have not been able to do long runs, no one has, but the car feels good round here.
“The start will be important. I’m starting on the inside so it gives me the possibility of a good start.”
Lewis Hamilton takes Monaco GP Formula 1 pole for first time
Lewis Hamilton comfortably claimed pole position for the Monaco Grand Prix, as his Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Nico Rosberg’s qualifying challenge went awry.
The two Mercedes drivers were once again well clear of the rest of the field on pure pace and thus engaged in an exclusive battle for the top spot.
Hamilton trailed Rosberg by nearly four tenths of a second after Q2, but reversed the positions by just over a tenth of a second after their first runs in the top-10 shootout.
Hamilton found even more time on his final run in Q3, while Rosberg abandoned his after locking up heavily at Sainte Devote.
That left Hamilton 0.342 seconds clear in claiming his first pole position in Monte Carlo.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was the only other driver to lap below 1m16s as he secured third spot on the grid, just under two tenths of a second ahead of Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo, who also failed to improve on his second run in Q3.
Team-mate Daniil Kvyat did find time on his second run to place fifth, ahead of the second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen.
Force India’s Sergio Perez hustled the VJM08 to a superb seventh spot, just ahead of Carlos Sainz, Pastor Maldonado and Max Verstappen, who all ended up on the same tenth in eighth, ninth and 10th.
Romain Grosjean failed to join his Lotus team-mate Maldonado in the top 10 shootout, after locking up at the second part of the Swimming Pool on his quickest lap in Q2.
An expected five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change ahead of the event means he should start 16th for Sunday’s race.
McLaren-Honda was confident of getting both cars through to Q3 for the first time this season, but neither made the cut in the end.
Fernando Alonso’s car suffered a suspected electrical problem before he could complete a flying lap in Q2, while team-mate Jenson Button was less than a tenth of a second away from making the top 10, something he described as "painful" when he learned of his fate, having had to slow for yellow flags (after Rosberg locked up and went off at Sainte Devote) on his final flying lap.
Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg was lucky to get away with striking the wall at Mirabeau in Q1 and ended up 13th fastest overall, just under 0.2s adrift of team-mate Perez.
Williams struggled badly in Monaco, with Felipe Massa winding up 14th fastest while team-mate Valtteri Bottas ended up being the highest-profile casualty in Q1.
The Finn was more than six tenths of a second away from making the cut and wound up 17th fastest, between the Saubers of Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson.
The Manor/Marussias were over two seconds further back in filling the final row of the grid.
Will Stevens was three tenths faster than team-mate Roberto Merhi through the first sector of their quickest laps, which proved crucial in the final reckoning.
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.041s||0.943s|
|5||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.182s||1.084s|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m16.808s||1.710s|
|9||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m16.957s||1.859s|
|11||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m17.193s||–|
|20||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m16.931s||–|
* Grosjean has a five-place penalty
Monaco GP: Sebastian Vettel fastest in final practice for Ferrari
Ferrari Formula 1 driver Sebastian Vettel topped the timesheets in third and final practice for the Monaco Grand Prix.
The German put a brilliant lap together in the closing stages to clock a 1m16.143s as Mercedes duo Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton were scrappy on their qualifying simulations.
Rosberg ended the session 0.218 seconds adrift of Vettel, with Hamilton a further three tenths further back on the streets of Monte Carlo.
After rain washed out most of second practice, teams wasted no time sending their drivers out on track to make up for lost time and gather crucial data for qualifying and the race.
Mercedes ran a different programme from most of its rivals, sending Hamilton and Rosberg straight out on the super-softs that could not be tried on Thursday while everyone else – except for Manor – focused on running the softs.
Hamilton and Rosberg did 10 laps on the super-soft rubber, performing cool-down laps in between each flying lap, with the German unable to get closer than half-a-second to the Briton.
The session was red-flagged just before the half-hour mark when Kimi Raikkonen glanced the barriers at Sainte Devote.
Quick work from the marshals meant the session was back under way a couple of minutes later, but several drivers’ super-soft tyre runs were disrupted as a result.
With just over 10 minutes remaining, the field turned its attention to qualifying-simulations on the super-soft tyres.
Hamilton was one of a number of drivers who complained about a lack of grip, with his team informing him that his tyre temperatures were a little high, and he was unable to improve on his earlier time.
And though Rosberg made a slight improvement and got ahead of Hamilton, it wasn’t enough to beat Vettel, who hooked up three impressive sectors to finish top of the pile.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo was fourth quickest, nearly a second off the pace, with Carlos Sainz Jr continuing Toro Rosso’s good form this weekend with fifth.
Raikkonen was sixth quickest, having been unable to return to the track after his crash, ahead of Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat and McLaren’s Jenson Button.
Max Verstappen, who has been impressive so far considering he had not raced in Monaco before this weekend, briefly went fourth quickest on the super-softs.
But next time around, he clipped the barrier at the final corner and ultimately finished ninth, with Lotus’s Romain Grosjean completing the top 10.
Force India’s Sergio Perez was 11th, ahead of the Lotus of Pastor Maldonado, Nico Hulkenberg in the second Force India and McLaren’s Fernando Alonso.
Williams, currently third in the constructors’ championship, never challenged the top of the timesheets with Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa down in 15th and 16th respectively, two seconds off the pace.
The Saubers were fastest in the speed trap but struggled for overall pace. Felipe Nasr was 17th and Marcus Ericsson, who got his braking wrong at Ste Devote and went down the escape road, 18th.
Will Stevens was 4.950s off the pace in the Manor-run Marussia in 19th but finished more than a second clear of team-mate Roberto Merhi.
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.120s||0.977s||26|
|5||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m17.256s||1.113s||39|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.471s||1.328s||28|
|9||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m17.788s||1.645s||23|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m17.832s||1.689s||30|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m18.102s||1.959s||32|
Spanish GP: Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen rues freak tyre blanket issue
Ferrari Formula 1 driver Kimi Raikkonen said a “freak” incident with a blanket burning a set of tyres hampered him in Spanish Grand Prix qualifying.
The Finn had been third in Q2, but was only able to use one set of new tyres in Q3 after the unusual problem.
That left Raikkonen off the pace and he ended up seventh while his team-mate Sebastian Vettel qualified third behind the two Mercedes.
“We had one new set of tyres we could have used in last qualifying but for some freak reason it got burnt in a blanket and destroyed,” said Raikkonen.
“But that is part of the game. It’s been a difficult few days but tomorrow is the race so hopefully we can score good points.”
Ferrari brought a major update package to Spain, but after Raikkonen struggled for pace in Friday practice he reverted back to the Bahrain set-up.
The Finn said it was his decision to do so and denied that had anything to do with his poor grid slot.
Instead, he put the error down to the conditions and his own mistakes.
“It was my decision plus the team’s,” said Raikkonen. “We changed the car to the old package because I wasn’t sure about it as yesterday was a difficult day.
“I wanted to make sure this was OK and if the new package was working as it should.
“When you make the decision obviously it is a lot of work to change. There was no chance to change it back but I’m happy to take the risk.
“I don’t think the outcome would have been as bad but for the last part of qualifying.
“The car felt good in the morning and in qualifying, too, but the last set [of tyres] in Q3 gave me poor grip and it was a bad lap.
“I was prepared to take the risk and it was working OK up until that point. It is what it is.”
Spanish GP: Nico Rosberg beats Lewis Hamilton to F1 pole position
Nico Rosberg dominated qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix, beating Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton to record his first pole position of the Formula 1 season.
Rosberg laid down a 1m24.681s on his first run in the top-10 shootout, and that proved enough for top spot when Hamilton failed to improve on his second run.
The Mercedes W06 had such a pace advantage over the rest that Hamilton and Rosberg could afford to run the harder tyre compound and still outpace everyone else in Q1, so it was only ever likely to be a personal battle between the two for pole – one that Rosberg won.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was best-of-the-rest, but almost eight tenths adrift of Rosberg, while team-mate Kimi Raikkonen used a new set of medium tyres to guarantee passage through Q1 and paid the price.
The Finn was four tenths slower on his sole Q3 run than he had been in Q2 and wound up seventh on the grid, behind the Williams of Valtteri Bottas and the Toro Rossos of Carlos Sainz Jr and Max Verstappen that have looked strong all weekend.
Felipe Massa wound up ninth fastest, over a second slower than his Williams team-mate Bottas.
The Brazilian split the Red Bulls, with Daniil Kvyat getting the better of team-mate Daniel Ricciardo by 0.141s to qualify eighth.
Both Lotus drivers failed to make it through to Q3 by over half a second, with Romain Grosjean 11th (complaining of a lack of front-end grip) and Pastor Maldonado 12th.
Both McLarens made it through to Q2 for the first time this season, but lacked the pace to be top-10 contenders.
Fernando Alonso was 11th fastest on his first Q2 run on used medium tyres, but he failed to improve on new rubber on his second run and slipped to 13th, just ahead of team-mate Jenson Button.
Felipe Nasr’s Sauber split the McLarens in Q1, but the Brazilian lost pace in Q2 and wound up 15th.
Team-mate Marcus Ericsson joined the Force Indias and Manor Marussias in falling after the first segment of the session.
Ericsson found six tenths of a second on his final run in Q1, but it wasn’t enough for him to join team-mate Nasr in Q2.
Ericsson was almost half a second slower than Nasr – lapping 0.171s shy of making the cut – just ahead of the struggling VJM08s of Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez.
The Manor/Marussias predictably brought up the rear of the grid, almost 2.8s adrift of the next fastest car.
Will Stevens again had the better of team-mate Roberto Merhi, to the tune of eight tenths of a second.
|5||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m26.136s||1.455s|
|6||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m26.249s||1.568s|
|8||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m26.629s||1.948s|
|10||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m26.770s||2.089s|
|17||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m28.365s||3.684s|
|18||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m28.442s||3.761s|
F1 Spanish Grand Prix: Rosberg fastest in FP3, Hamilton spins
Nico Rosberg topped the timesheets in the third and final Formula 1 practice session for the Spanish Grand Prix, while his Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton was third after a spin.
Rosberg clocked a 1m26.031s on the medium-compound Pirelli tyre, 0.156s clear of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.
Hamilton, who topped second practice, ended up third after a messy session that included a spin at Turn 3 and a small mistake on his medium tyre run.
Rosberg was quickest during the hard tyre runs in the opening part of the session, too, when track temperatures were 22C, nearly 30C lower than they were in FP2 on Friday.
The German, who has not beaten Hamilton in either qualifying or the race so far this year, looked smooth throughout the session as he retained his advantage when attention turned to low-fuel runs.
It was not so successful for Hamilton, who after completing just one installation lap in the opening half of the session ran wide onto the astro turf at Turn 3 and spun.
The Briton stopped the car hitting the wall on the inside of the track before engaging reverse and rejoining the fray.
Hamilton’s medium tyre run was 0.201s shy of Rosberg’s leading time, but four tenths ahead of Williams’s Valtteri Bottas in fourth.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was fifth, ahead of Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo who recovered from a disappointing day with engine issues on Friday to get 19 laps of running under his belt.
Felipe Massa had a scruffy lap as he clocked the seventh fastest time, with Max Verstappen continuing Toro Rosso’s good form at the Circuit de Catalunya so far this weekend to secure eighth.
Daniil Kvyat missed the first 40 minutes of the session while his Red Bull team fixed a water leak and he managed just seven laps and the ninth fastest time, one place clear of Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz Jr.
Jenson Button was the leading McLaren in 11th, ahead of Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg, who showed good long run pace on Friday.
Sauber is lacking updates in Spain, with Felipe Nasr down in 13th and team-mate Marcus Ericsson 17th.
Fernando Alonso was 14th in the second McLaren, ahead of Lotus pair Romain Grosjean and Pastor Maldonado.
Sergio Perez was nearly a second adrift of his Force India team-mate Hulkenberg in 18th, with the Manor-run Marussias of Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi bringing up the rear.
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m27.048s||1.027s||19|
|8||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m27.132s||1.111s||18|
|9||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m27.313s||1.292s||7|
|10||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m27.809s||1.788s||17|
|12||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m28.082s||2.061s||13|
|18||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m28.996s||2.975s||14|
Bahrain GP: Kimi Raikkonen “could have pushed more” in qualifying
Ferrari Formula 1 driver Kimi Raikkonen admitted he underestimated the grip level at the end of Bahrain Grand Prix qualifying as he ended up fourth on the grid.
The Finn – who last week in China described poor qualifying as a “habit” he needed to break – achieved his best grid position of the year, but he was overshadowed by Ferrari team-mate Vettel splitting the Mercedes to get on the front row.
“I think there was more grip than I expected,” said Raikkonen.
“Afterwards it’s easy to say I could have pushed a bit harder in certain places but I wasn’t sure.
“But the car was OK, the lap wasn’t too bad, maybe I just ran a little bit wide in one corner but that wouldn’t have cost a lot of laptime.
“I could have pushed more in certain places because there was surprisingly good grip.”
The result was still Raikkonen’s best qualifying position since the 2013 German GP.
“It gives you a better chance or a more easy life for tomorrow as long as we make a good start out of it,” he said.
“Obviously then the race can turn out to be different because of that, so that helps.
“We know that we still have some work to do and things to improve but I’d take this rather than fifth or sixth place – I’m kind of happy.”
Kimi Raikkonen – A good starting point
Kimi Raikkonen: “It was a positive day even if it’s a bit disappointing to finish fourth, because our aim is to be at the front. My last lap was quite good, I made a small mistake and ran wide a little bit in one corner, but it was nearly nothing, it did not cost me a lot of time. It was very close with everybody. On the track there was more grip than I expected and probably I could have pushed a little bit more, but I was not sure I could. My car was working well today, the position on the grid is not ideal but it’s a good starting point for the race. Tomorrow we’ll try to make a good start, and move on from there with a good first lap. To get ahead of Rosberg would help a lot, and then we’ll see what we can do. We’ll do our maximum”.
Bahrain GP F1: Lewis Hamilton beats Sebastian Vettel to pole
Lewis Hamilton continued his dominance of Formula 1 qualifying in 2015 by securing pole position for the Bahrain Grand Prix, but Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel denied Mercedes a front row lockout.
Reigning world champion Hamilton was the only driver to lap below 1m33s in Q2 and found a tenth of a second on his only run in Q3 to secure pole by over four tenths of a second.
Vettel was the only other driver to lap in sub 1m33s, his 1m32.982s lap good enough to relegate Hamilton’s team-mate Nico Rosberg to third.
Rosberg, who qualified on pole for this race for the last two years, lost crucial time in the first sector and couldn’t recover, ending up 0.147s slower than Vettel, but just ahead of the second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen.
Williams locked out row three, with Valtteri Bottas substantially faster than team-mate Felipe Massa.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo qualified less than a tenth adrift in seventh, but with a gap of over six tenths to the remainder of the top 10.
Nico Hulkenberg’s Force India qualified a superb eighth, just 0.012s clear of the Toro Rosso of Carlos Sainz Jr, while Romain Grosjean’s Lotus rounded out the top 10, just 0.022s further back.
Both Force Indias made it through to Q2 for the first time this season, with Sergio Perez edging out team-mate Hulkenberg by two tenths of a second in Q1.
But the Mexican just missed out on joining him in Q3 during a tight battle in the middle portion of qualifying.
Perez looked on course to make the top 10 as the session finished, but lost out Sainz by just 0.063s so wound up 11th.
That meant both Saubers missed out on making Q3 – with Felipe Nasr just 0.033s slower than Perez in 12th.
Marcus Ericsson made an error on his best lap so was almost three tenths further back in 13th.
In fact the Swede was only fractionally faster than Fernando Alonso, as McLaren-Honda made it through to Q2 for the first time this season.
Alonso qualified 14th, just ahead of the Toro Rosso of Max Verstappen, who complained of a lack of power at the start of Q2.
Pastor Maldonado’s Lotus, Daniil Kvyat’s Red Bull and Jenson Button’s McLaren-Honda joined the Manor/Marussias in filing through the Q1 exit door.
A problem with Maldonado’s Mercedes engine meant he missed the cut by just 0.024s, having looked strong throughout free practice.
A poor lap from Kvyat, who lost much of Saturday’s practice session when he beached his RB11 in the gravel, meant the Russian languished down in 17th place, his worst qualifying result of the season so far.
Will Stevens again comfortably outpaced team-mate Roberto Merhi, as Manor qualified off the final row of the grid for the first time this season thanks to more problems for Button’s McLaren.
Button’s car, which suffered reliability dramas throughout practice on Friday, stopped exiting Turn 3 on his out-lap with a suspected electrical problem, so the 2009 world champion failed to set a time.
|7||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m33.832s||1.261s|
|8||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m34.450s||1.879s|
|9||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m34.462s||1.891s|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m34.704s||–|
|15||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m35.103s||–|
|17||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m35.800s||–|
Bahrain GP: Lewis Hamilton edges out Sebastian Vettel in FP3
Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton edged Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel to the quickest time in the third and final Formula 1 practice session for the Bahrain Grand Prix.
The reigning world champion clocked a 1m34.599s – the fastest time of the weekend so far – on the soft tyre to finish 0.069s clear of Vettel.
The other Mercedes of Nico Rosberg was third, after a slow first sector, 0.369s off the pace with Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen fourth.
Raikkonen led the way after the medium tyre runs, with Ferrari team-mate Vettel 0.245s adrift in second – but the order changed significantly when drivers bolted on the soft tyres with 13 minutes of the one-hour session to go.
Rosberg was the first of the frontrunners to do a performance run, but his first sector was three tenths slower than his best on Friday.
His team-mate Hamilton had a much cleaner lap to top the charts for the first time this weekend.
The circuit was very dusty early on amid blustery conditions, with winds hitting 20mph and track temperatures 15C lower than they were during Friday’s daytime session.
The dirty circuit meant a number of drivers struggled for grip with both Lotus’s Romain Grosjean and Hamilton locking up on the run to Turn 1 and running wide onto the run-off.
Williams drivers Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa were fifth and sixth respectively, ahead of the Lotus of Pastor Maldonado, who was as high as fifth during the medium-tyre runs.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo, who didn’t go out until the final half and hour and ran wide at Turn 13 on his medium-tyre run, was eighth, with Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg and Sauber’s Felipe Nasr completing the top 10.
Jenson Button was the first driver out on track in a bid to make up for a loss of track time on Friday, when he completed just a handful of laps.
The Briton was the leading McLaren in 11th after 14 laps, five places and half a second quicker than team-mate Fernando Alonso in 16th.
Kvyat, who was caught out when he spun at Turn 4 and beached his Red Bull in the gravel, ended up 12th after the team got him back out for the final few minutes of the session.
Marcus Ericsson’s Sauber was 13th, ahead of Max Verstappen’s Toro Rosso and Force India’s Sergio Perez.
It was a disappointing session for Carlos Sainz, who could only manage 17th, one place clear of Lotus’ Romain Grosjean, who asked his team early in the session, "how can the car be so different?"
The Manors brought up the rear of the field, with Will Stevens eight tenths quicker than team-mate Roberto Merhi. Both were within the 107 per cent cut-off time.
|8||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m36.335s||1.736s||8|
|9||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m36.421s||1.822s||13|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m36.548s||1.949s||7|
|14||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m36.684s||2.085s||11|
|15||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m36.727s||2.128s||14|
|17||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m36.979s||2.380s||14|
F1 Chinese GP: Hamiton shades Rosberg in Mercedes qualifying 1-2
Lewis Hamilton fended off Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Nico Rosberg by less than half a tenth of a second to take Chinese Grand Prix pole at Shanghai, maintaining his perfect qualifying record in 2015.
Hamilton had been strong favourite for pole after topping all three practice sessions and Q2.
A 1m35.782s on his first Q3 run emphasised that status, with Rosberg three tenths adrift at that point.
But it became closer in the final battle, with Hamilton unable to improve and Rosberg closing to within 0.042s.
Malaysian GP winner Sebastian Vettel was nearly a second off Hamilton’s pole time in third place for Ferrari.
That denied the resurgent Williams of Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas, which were top-three contenders but ultimately found themselves three tenths and half a second down on Vettel respectively.
They still beat the second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen, who was sixth ahead of Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo.
Daniil Kvyat failed to reach Q3 for the second time in three appearances with Red Bull, taking 12th.
Romain Grosjean was eighth for Lotus, while his team-mate Pastor Maldonado missed out on Q3 by just 0.007s and will start 11th.
Sauber was the midfield underdog starring in Q3 this time, securing the fifth row places with Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson.
By contrast the Toro Rossos were left out in Q2. Max Verstappen, who locked up heavily on his last run, and Carlos Sainz Jr share row seven.
McLaren’s encouraging Friday times proved deceptive as Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso found themselves out in Q1 and on row nine, just 0.004s apart.
They were at least within a tenth of the Force Indias. Nico Hulkenberg only got ahead of Button with a final Q1 effort, while Sergio Perez scraped through into Q2 then languished seven tenths off the Toro Rossos.
The Manor-run Marussias were 3s off the tail of the field but made the 107 per cent target in Q1 so are both clear to start the race, Will Stevens ahead of Roberto Merhi.
|7||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m37.540s||1.758s|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m38.209s||–|
|13||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m38.393s||–|
|14||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m38.538s||–|
|15||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m39.290s||–|
|16||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m39.216s||–|
F1 Chinese GP: Hamilton makes it three from three in final practice
Lewis Hamilton completed a clean sweep of Chinese Grand Prix Formula 1 practice sessions by beating Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg on Saturday morning at Shanghai.
Hamilton was quickest in both segments of the session – leading his team-mate by three tenths on medium tyres and then by 0.226 seconds after the qualifying simulations on softs.
The reigning F1 world champion could have been faster still, outpacing Rosberg by four tenths at sector two on his best lap before losing some of his cushion on the run to the line.
Ferrari was again Mercedes’ closest rival. Sebastian Vettel got within a tenth of Rosberg on mediums but on softs the gap to Hamilton’s pacesetting time grew to 0.7s.
Kimi Raikkonen slotted the second Ferrari into fourth, behind Vettel.
Fernando Alonso was only able to do half a lap in the session as his McLaren-Honda stopped with an apparent engine problem within moments of taking to the track.
Despite McLaren’s best efforts, he was unable to get out again. Jenson Button represented the team alone in 15th, but had looked stronger on medium tyres.
There were headaches for Red Bull and Williams too. Red Bull had to warn Daniil Kvyat to take care of his brakes again, while smoke in the Williams cockpit caused concern for Felipe Massa.
Red Bull ended up better off on pace – Daniel Ricciardo and Kvyat taking fifth and sixth, half a second off the Ferraris and just ahead of Carlos Sainz Jr’s Toro Rosso.
Valtteri Bottas and Massa were only eighth and 11th in the Williams, sandwiching Max Verstappen’s Toro Rosso and Romain Grosjean’s Lotus.
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m39.020s||1.405s||8|
|6||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m39.106s||1.491s||14|
|7||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m39.113s||1.498s||17|
|9||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m39.274s||1.659s||19|
|12||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m39.513s||1.898s||14|
|17||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m39.781s||2.166s||17|