It will be an all-Mercedes front row in Barcelona on Sunday, but for the first time this year the man on pole will be Nico Rosberg and not world champion Lewis Hamilton, who was beaten into second by his team mate by just over a quarter of a second.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in third was the only man to get within a second of the Silver Arrows. He was followed in the times by Williams’ Valterri Bottas and rookie Carlos Sainz, who delighted his home crowd with fifth in the Toro Rosso.
Team mate Max Verstappen made it an excellent session for the Italian team with seventh, ahead of Kimi Raikkonen in the second Ferrari, and the Red Bulls of Daniil Kvyat and Daniel Ricciardo, split by the Williams of Felipe Massa.
Only the two Mercedes drivers and Vettel in the Ferrari progressed into Q2 without having to use the quicker medium tyre. That second knockout phase bid farewell to the Lotus duo of Romain Grosjean and Pastor Maldonado, the re-liveried McLarens of Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button, and the second Sauber of Felipe Nasr.
It was a disastrous Saturday for Force India, with both Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez eliminated in Q1, along with the Sauber of Marcus Ericsson and the Marussias of Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi, who both safely made the 107 percent requirement.
|Spanish Grand Prix Qualifying Results|
|5||55||Carlos Sainz Jr||1:26.773||1:26.475||1:26.136||-0.442||16|