Hamilton beats Rosberg to Barcelona pole
10 May 2014 – Lewis Hamilton took his fourth pole position of the season during Saturday's qualifying session for the Spanish Grand Prix. The Mercedes driver set a 1:25.232 to beat team-mate Nico Rosberg, who had topped final practice, by 0.168 seconds. Daniel Ricciardo took third, while Sebastian Vettel came to a halt in Q3.
Heading into the final shootout, it was Rosberg who held the upper hand, the German topping Q1 and Q2 as Hamilton struggled for grip.
But on the final Q3 runs, Hamilton delivered a stunning lap to surge clear.
Ominously for the remainder of the field, a massive margin of 1.053 seconds separated Hamilton and the Red Bull of Ricciardo, suggesting that tomorrow's race will be no more than a distant battle between the two Silver Arrows machines.
Valtteri Bottas took an impressive fourth for Williams, ahead of Lotus's Romain Grosjean and the Ferrari's of Kimi Räikkönen and Fernando Alonso – the latter unable to make an impact in front of his home supporters.
Jenson Button did well to haul his McLaren into the top ten positions, placing just ahead of Felipe Massa's Williams and the Vettel's Red Bull, which came to a halt in the opening minutes of the top ten phase.
Force India's challenging weekend continued, with Nico Hülkenberg and Sergio Pérez failing to make it past Q2.
Toro Rosso rookie Daniil Kvyat ended the day in 13th, ahead of Sauber's Esteban Gutiérrez, McLaren's Kevin Magnussen and team-mate Jean-Éric Vergne, who will drop to the back with his 10-place grid penalty.
Pastor Maldonado was the biggest name to drop out of the running in the opening knockout session, signalling a short red flag period after running wide at Turn 3, sliding across the track and hitting the concrete wall.
The former Spanish Grand Prix winner will join Vergne on the final row of the grid for tomorrow's race.
Adrian Sutil also fell at the first hurdle, the German lacking pace in Sauber's overhauled, lighter car.
Max Chilton comfortably beat Marussia team-mate Jules Bianchi to 18th, while rookie Marcus Ericsson out-qualified fellow Caterham driver Kamui Kobayashi for the first time in his Formula 1 career.
Sunday's 66-lap Spanish Grand Prix gets underway at 2pm local time (GMT +2)