- Monaco Grand Prix - Qualifying
Rosberg heads Mercedes front-row lock-out in Monaco
Nico Rosberg took his third pole position in a row as Mercedes locked out the front row of the grid for the Monaco Grand Prix in drying conditions.
By the time the drivers were battling for pole in Q3, the super-soft slick tyre was the rubber of choice and Rosberg put it to the best use with a 1:13.876. He was just 0.091s faster than team-mate Lewis Hamilton as both left it until their final attempt to set their best times.
After the first runs in Q3 the Red Bulls were on top, but when it came down to the business end of the session Sebastian Vettel was 0.104s shy of Rosberg in third and Mark Webber was another two tenths slower in fourth. Kimi Raikkonen claimed fifth on the grid with a competitive lap time of 1:14.822, while Ferrari's Fernando Alonso had to settle for sixth with a time 0.002s shy of the Lotus.
Sergio Perez put in a strong lap for seventh on the grid in his McLaren ahead of Adrian Sutil in eighth, who went into the session without any running on the super-soft in FP3 after crashing out in the morning session. Jenson Button was eighth fastest in the second McLaren ahead of a good performance from Toro Rosso's Jean-Eric Vergne in tenth.
Dry tyres were first used midway through Q2, making for a tense session as drivers improved with each lap. Alonso, Raikkonen and Hamilton all looked at risk at one stage, but bolted on super-soft tyres to ensure a place in Q3. Nico Hulkenberg, Daniel Ricciardo, Romain Grosjean, Valtteri Bottas, Giedo van der Garde and Pastor Maldonado - who was quickest in Q1 - all failed to make the top ten.
Paul di Resta, Charles Pic, Esteban Gutierrez, Max Chilton, Jules Bianchi and Felipe Massa all dropped out at the end of Q1. The session took place in damp conditions but Bianchi and Massa did not get a chance to set a lap time. Bianchi's engine expired on the hill up to Casino Square and Massa's car was not repaired in time from his FP3 crash to get him out in time.