Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2014

Rosberg beats Hamilton to pole by narrow margin

2014 Canadian Grand Prix qualifyingPosted on Author Keith Collantine

Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2014Nico Rosberg prevailed in a tight battle with team mate Lewis Hamilton to claim pole position for the Canadian Grand Prix.

There was no repeat of the controversial circumstance of qualifying in Monaco as Rosberg edged the other Mercedes by less than a tenth of a second.


Hamilton and Rosberg exchanged fastest times at the beginning of Q1, until Hamilton found seven-tenths of a second with his final effort to end the session well clear of Rosberg. The pair were eventually split by Kevin Magnussen, as the McLaren driver used a set of super-soft tyres to ensure his passage to Q2.

Behind them seven of the eighth Mercedes-powered cars filled the top seven places, with Daniil Kvyat’s Toro Rosso the highest-placed non-Mercedes car.

However the eighth Mercedes-engined car, belonging to Sergio Perez, nearly didn’t make the cut for Q2. He ended the session 16th after spinning at turn eight.

He was in good company, as several drivers were caught out by the low-grip track, including Hamilton who went across the turn one run-off on his first lap. However Marcus Ericsson was the only driver to hit the wall, bringing out the red flags with 16 seconds remaining.

That meant none of the other drivers could complete their laps. But Pastor Maldonado’s session was already over as Lotus had advised him to pull over in the final moments. The Marussia pair were out too, Jules Bianchi unable to do a second run due to a problem with his car.

Drivers eliminated in Q1

17 Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1’18.329
18 Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1’18.348
19 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1’18.359
20 Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1’19.278
21 Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1’19.820
22 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari


The Williams drivers showed they had the pace to challenge the Mercedes on the super-soft tyre in Q2 as Felipe Massa headed the times to begin with.

But when the Mercedes drivers took to the track for their final runs they bumped the Williams back to third place, Hamilton leading Rosberg by over two tenths of a second.

Sebastian Vettel was languishing outside of the top ten before the final runs, but a clean final lap carried him through into Q3.

But with less than a tenth of a second covering Jenson Button in eighth to Magnussen four places behind him, the margins were incredibly fine. Nico Hulkenberg missed the final ten by less than five hundredths of a second, and was eliminated along with the other Force India of Sergio Perez.

Drivers eliminated in Q2

11 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1’16.300
12 Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1’16.310
13 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1’16.472
14 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1’16.687
15 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1’16.713
16 Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1’17.314


Hamilton flew through the first two sectors on his first run in Q3, lighting up the timing screens with the fastest times.

But he began to close on a Red Bull towards the end of his lap and crossed the line slower than Rosberg – by less than a tenth of a second. “Just that last sector with traffic by the look of it,” said race engineer Peter Bonnington.

The Williams drivers were next, followed by the two Red Bulls and Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari. Kimi Raikkonen then put his car eighth after single run in the final minutes of the session.

As in Monaco Rosberg was the first of the two Mercedes drivers to set a time but this time it was a clean lap. Not far behind him Hamilton set a new fastest time in the first sector but Rosberg responded in the second.

Hamilton locked his front-right wheel at turn eight and this proved costly – his middle sector time was slower than Rosberg and that made the difference at the finishing line. Rosberg set a 1’14.874 and Hamilton was less than a tenth of a second slower.

But behind them it was even closer – Sebastian Vettel claimed third place with just 0.041s covering him, the two Williams drivers, and Daniel Ricciardo.

Top ten in Q3

1 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’14.874
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1’14.953
3 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’15.548
4 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1’15.550
5 Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1’15.578
6 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1’15.589
7 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’15.814
8 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1’16.162
9 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’16.182
10 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1’16.214

2014 Canadian Grand Prix

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Image © Daimler/Hoch Zwei

137 comments on “Rosberg beats Hamilton to pole by narrow margin”

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  1. Good lap from NR, mistake by LH.

    However, given that LH as been ahead in 5 of the 6 sessions this weekend, I suspect he’s still the favorite for the win tomorrow.

    1. And in the first of the two sessions that count the most Rosberg was the man yet again. I expect a nice controlled race from the German tomorrow with a comfartable win.

  2. Also, Seems like a “German” Decade – Seb and now Nico Rosberg, and who knows Nico Hulk in future. Hmm…

    1. More like a German century… with a brief Spanish-Finnish-British interruption.

  3. First time Lewis will be doing the chase on a normal track.
    Can’t wait for the race!

  4. Can’t wait for the race tomorrow

  5. Maybe Keith would want to post all Q3 times in sequence, attempt by attempt, for Nico and Lewis along with sector times.

    I think I recall the commentator stating that Nico’s last time was not as good at his previous (best) one.

    1. No, Nico’s second time was better than his first time in Q3 (around 0.079 seconds if I recall correctly).

  6. I really hope Valtteri can get he’s first podium tomorrow.

  7. With all the top drivers setting their fastest laps on the super softs in Q2, I’m guessing early pit stops in the race, within 10 laps?

  8. Great guali tonight, I think we all enjoyed it! Nico stunning once again in dry qualifying but Lewis very close behind him! It should be an amazing battle tomorrow! The scenario for the Canadian grand prix was supposed to be damage limitation for Nico and psychological boost for Lewis but it hasn’t turned out to be the case so far. I believe that- provided they don’t take each other out tomorrow (for some odd reason I fear that this will happen)- Nico has the upper hand. But who knows? Maybe tomorrow will be Spain 2012! I am a Ferrari fan but I’d love to see a Williams winning! And their pace so far has been fantastic all weekend!

    1. quali*

  9. 23kennyboy23
    7th June 2014, 21:17

    For those writing hamilton off the difference in laptime is tiny. Long afternoon tomorrow and DRS along that straight could have them swapping positions throughout

    1. Not to mention the Wall.

  10. Cant wait Damon humble pie for you tommorow. You contraidt yourself the worst on this forum you say Ros is better just because of dry qualifying who is winning the dry races.

  11. No one is mentioning the fact that as Lewis puts down a stunning lap, Nico can just grab Lewis’ data. So where Lewis is naturally gifted, Rosberg can try as hard as he can, and when that doesn’t work, he can say, “alright boys, let’s have Lewis’ data”. If we sense a little bit of frustration in Hamilton’s demeanour, it’s got to be that.

    1. No. LH has all the access to NR’s data that NR has of his. They are each pushing each other as are both sides of the garage. They all get to see where one driver is excelling over the other, on what corners and what sectors, and they get to figure out why and try to improve and outdo each other. Seeing each others’s data is no guarantee that they can simply change some setting or some setup and improve, without upsetting the feel of the car that helped gain pace in other areas. It’s a constant work in progress equal all around within the whole team. Taking or rejecting ideas at all times. Studying. Learning. Trying. Guessing. Adapting. It’s all good.

      If LH is frustrated today it probably shows he is human and is like most professional athletes and performers….his own biggest critic.

  12. Well that just shows how good Rosberg is, struggling to find a good setup of my own, copying my teammates setup that as been perfected for him and still out qualifying him.

    1. Well that just shows how good Rosberg is, struggling to find a good setup of my own

      Hehe. Time to stop commenting and have a lie down.

  13. Come on Hamilton, get your head in the game.

  14. I was quite disappointed in Massas performance in q3. He was doing great but he didn’t get the lap together. Shame, AS HE could have done well. Still better than bottas imo.

  15. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    8th June 2014, 3:06

    Gotta love how people are proclaiming that Nico is now faster than Lewis over 1 lap.
    Lewis made two mistakes on that final Q3 lap, one at T2 and another at T8, yet he was less than a tenth of a second slower.

    My money is still on Lewis tomorrow.
    Hopefully it’s a close fight for the win though. These two race very hard and very fair together.

  16. pretty rare anybody does a perfect lap in qually especially Q3 , so personally I would be amazed if either of these drivers beat the other all the time

    nobody seems to have noticed the crucial fact about this race , it is probably the most crucial on fuel for the season …and one of these guys is consistently better on usage than the other , could make a decisive difference

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