Rosberg takes second successive Monaco pole
24 May 2014 – Nico Rosberg took his second successive Monaco Grand Prix pole position during Saturday's qualifying hour. The German set a 1:15.989 during the opening set of Q3 runs to edge out Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton, before an error on his final lap brought out the yellow flags and prevented any improvements.
Heading into the third and final grid-deciding phase, Hamilton held the upper hand over Rosberg, having set the pace in final practice and topped the Q2 timesheets.
But it was Rosberg who moved to the front on the opening Q3 runs, breaking into the 1m15s for the first time this weekend and placing half a tenth ahead of Hamilton.
All drivers involved in the shootout bolted on fresh Super Softs for final attempts, but Rosberg – one of the first to start his run – made a mistake on the run down to Mirabeau and was forced to take to the escape road.
This brought out the yellow flags and prevented any of his main rivals from posting improved lap times.
Hamilton thus had to settle for second on tomorrow's grid, sparking a rather frosty parc ferme atmosphere.
As has been the case for the majority of the Monaco weekend, the Red Bulls of Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel were best of the rest, the latter doing particularly well to overcome a suspected ERS issue.
Ferrari duo Fernando Alonso and Kimi Räikkönen followed, with Toro Rosso's Jean-Éric Vergne, ever-impressive rookies Kevin Magnussen and Daniil Kvyat and Force India's Sergio Pérez completing the top ten places.
While their team-mates made it through to Q3, Nico Hülkenberg and Jenson Button both fell at the second hurdle, along with Valtteri Bottas, the Lotuses of Romain Grosjean and Pastor Maldonado and Felipe Massa.
Massa had been due to compete in the second phase, but was involved in an incident with Marcus Ericsson at the end of Q1, the Caterham driver misjudging his braking point for Mirabeau and collecting the Williams.
Sauber's miserable start to the 2014 season continued, with both Esteban Gutiérrez and Adrian Sutil falling at the first hurdle. Behind, Marussia drivers Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton placed ahead of their Caterham rivals.
Sunday's 78-lap race in Monaco gets underway at 2pm local time (GMT +2)