Rosberg takes pole after engine issues

German GP: Rosberg snatches pole despite engine cut-out scareNico Rosberg will start the German Grand Prix from pole position, after beating his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton in qualifying at Hockenheim.

Rosberg was forced to abort his first Q3 run due to an “electronic error” that briefly cut the engine.

But his second lap gave him pole which was “a fantastic lap in the circumstances” according to the pitwall, as he ran with enough fuel for two laps instead of one in case he made a mistake on his first attempt.

It was Rosberg’s fifth pole of the season – 30 years on from his father Keke starting from pole here for McLaren – and came after setting the pace in every practice session all weekend.

It had looked like Hamilton would score his seventh pole of the season, but a scrappy second run, which included a huge lock-up at the hairpin, cos him dearly. He will start second.

Daniel Ricciardo will start third for Red Bull, bemoaning “losing the rear at Turn 8” on his final attack, ahead of teammate Max Verstappen.

Kimi Raikkonen outqualified Sebastian Vettel at Ferrari, who locked out the third row.

Rosberg stays on top in Germany

Nico Rosberg stuck at the top of the timesheets in Hockenheim ahead of the German Grand Prix.

On a slightly warmer track Rosberg’s best time was a tenth of a second off his quickest from first practice.

Drivers had been told restrictions on track limits would not be enforced in the first practice session that policy changed in the afternoon.

Ahead of the session teams were told each driver could only run wide at turn one a maximum of three times before being reported to the stewards, and some came close to using up all three ‘strikes’.

Lewis Hamilton got within four-tenths of a second of his team mate after locking up at the Spitzkehre on his quickest lap and fighting oversteer at turn ten.

Mercedes’ rivals were closer to them in the second session than in the first. Sebastian Vettel lapped within six-tenths of a second of Rosberg and both Red Bulls were eight-tenths off the pace.

Rosberg fastest in German practice

Photo published for Nico Rosberg edges Lewis Hamilton in German Grand Prix practiceNico Rosberg set the quickest time of the session on super-soft tyres, posting a 1’15.517 which was over a second faster than his pole position time on F1’s last visit to the German circuit. Lewis Hamilton ended up three-tenths of a second off his team mate.

The competition was over a second behind despite every driver in the top ten using super-soft tyres to set their best time. Sebastian Vettel was 1.1 seconds adrift, followed by team mate Kimi Raikkonen.

The McLaren driver ended up seventh quickest, the Red Bulls separating him from his former team. With Button eighth ahead of the two Toro Rossos, the top ten was sorted nearly two-by-two.

Grosjean had a spin late in the session at turn ten and finished in 14th place. Charles Leclerc took over the second Haas from Esteban Gutierrez in this session.

The only other test driver in action was Esteban Ocon, who took over Jolyon Palmer’s Renault, but had to pit after reporting a power steering problem.

Rosberg takes last gasp pole in Hungary

Nico Rosberg will start on pole position after a stunning last lap in qualifying that saw him pip his team mate Lewis Hamilton.

The world champion was forced to slow down when Fernando Alonso spun in front of him and while others also had to compromise their laps, Rosberg was just able to get away without slowing and snatched pole in the dying moments.

Q1 was delayed by around 15 minutes when heavy rain soaked the circuit just before it was due to begin.

When it did eventually get back underway again it lasted for just a couple of minutes with the red flags brought back out when rain returned.

At that moment, Sergio Perez headed up a Force India one-two while at the back were the two Mercedes drivers.

The session restarted but only for a few minutes before Marcus Ericsson crashed at turn eight and the red flag came out.

Felipe Massa was one of the first to switch onto intermediate tyres and he strayed too far over the white line at turn four and spun into the barriers, these brought another red flag.

The cars were back out on track with five minutes to go until the final 100 seconds when Manor’s Rio Haryanto crashed at turn eight bringing Q1 to an early end almost an hour after it started.

The two Renault’s suffered most from this who were caught out by the red flags and both Jolyon Palmer and Kevin Magnussen were knocked out

Q2 was all about the switch onto the dry tyres and the final minute saw the times tumble by almsot three seconds.

With just seconds to go, Kimi Raikkonen went fastest, but with the rapidly evolving track, the Finn was knocked out along with Romain Grosjean, Daniil Kvyat, Sergio Perez.

Raikkonen slots in next ahead of Esteban Gutierrez and Felipe Nasr who had good pace in the rain earlier on.

Red Bull were close but Mercedes were too strong for them in Q3, Hamilton looked set to take pole especially once Alonso spun which brought out the waved double yellow flags.

All the other drivers were forced to slow down, but Rosberg who was slow in sector one, was at the right point of the track at the right time and was able to sneak to pole.

He will start ahead of Hamilton, Daniel Ricciardo, Max Verstappen and Sebastian Vettel

Hamilton crashes, Roberg goes fastest in Hungary

Nico Rosberg topped the time sheets in second practice ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix after Lewis Hamilton crashed his Mercedes.

Hamilton was on course to set the quickest lap time in the early stages of the session when his W07 snapped sideways entering turn 11. He skidded across the run-off and make contact with the barrier.

But although red flags were immediately shown to stop the session, Hamilton was able to drive his car back to the pits. Nonetheless he took no further part in the session as Mercedes investigated the extent of the damage.

That left Nico Rosberg to lead the way for Mercedes. While Hamilton was unable to set a time on the super-soft tyres, Rosberg lowered the best time of the weekend so far to a 1’20.435.

Red Bull revealed their one-lap pace on the same rubber but Daniel Ricciardo was not able to get within half a second of Rosberg’s time. The only other drivers to lap the Hungaroring within a second of Rosberg’s time was Sebastian Vettel.

Despite only doing a single flying lap Hamilton ended the session fifth-quickest behind Max Verstappen, who made a mistake on his quickest run.

As in the first session the McLarens were the fourth-quickest team. Fernando Alonso, running with a new power unit after Honda spotted a potential problem developing during first practice, was seventh behind Kimi Raikkonen, and less than a tenth faster than team mate Jenson Button. The Force India pair completed the top ten.

The final stages of the session saw reliability problems force Felipe Nasr’s Sauber and Carlos Sainz Jnr’s Toro Rosso to stop.

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