Sao Paulo, Brazil (SportsNetwork.com) – Nico Rosberg claimed his 10th pole of
the 2014 Formula One season after beating his Mercedes teammate and
championship rival, Lewis Hamilton, by a slim margin in Saturday’s qualifying
for the Brazilian Grand Prix.
Rosberg topped Hamilton for the pole with a lap in 1 minute, 10.023 seconds,
which was only 0.033 seconds quicker than Hamilton’s lap. Rosberg also broke
the track qualifying record time of 1:10.646 here at the Interlagos circuit,
set by Brazilian Rubens Barrichello in 2004.
Heading into Sunday’s 71-lap Brazilian GP — the penultimate race of the
season — Rosberg trails Hamilton in the world championship standings by 24
points. Hamilton has won the last five grand prix — Italy, Singapore, Japan,
Russia and the United States.
Rosberg has been perfect this weekend in Brazil. He topped the time charts in
the first two practice sessions, held on Friday, and again in final practice,
which ran prior to qualifying. Rosberg was fastest in all three rounds of
A total of 75 points are up for grabs in the last two races. The winner of the
Brazilian GP will receive 25 points, while the winner of the Nov. 23 season-
ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will collect 50. Abu Dhabi will award double the
amount of points for drivers and teams.
Felipe Massa, a Brazilian, qualified third in front of his home crowd with a
lap in 1:10.247.
Massa’s teammate, Valtteri Bottas, took the fourth spot, followed by Jenson
Button from McLaren and Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel, the four-time F1 world
champion and winner of last year’s Brazilian GP.
McLaren’s Kevin Magnussen qualified seventh, while Fernando Alonso from
Ferrari, Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo and Alonso’s teammate, Kim Raikkonen,
completed the top-10.
For the second grand prix in a row, the field will feature 18 cars instead of
22 since Caterham and Marussia are both missing the race due to their current
financial issues. Marussia ceased its operations earlier this week.