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Hamilton on pole as Mercedes dominates

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Hamilton on pole as Mercedes dominates
By:
Apr 11, 2015, 11:40 AM

Lewis Hamilton secured his third consecutive pole position as Mercedes dominated qualifying for the Chinese Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W06
Roberto Merhi, Manor F1 Team
Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 Team
Romain Grosjean, Lotus F1 Team
Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF15-T
Jenson Button, McLaren MP4-30 running flow-vis paint
Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF15-T sends sparks flying
Valtteri Bottas, Williams FW37 sends sparks flying
Marcus Ericsson, Sauber C34
Roberto Merhi, Manor F1 Team

The world champion needed just one run in Q3 to grab pole ahead of teammate Nico Rosberg with a best time of 1:35.782.

It was Mercedes' 14th straight pole and Hamilton's 41st in Formula 1.

Sebastian Vettel was the best of the rest for Ferrari, but the German finished nearly a full second behind the Mercedes duo.

Teammate Kimi Raikkonen was unable to match the German's pace and wound up sixth behind the Williams of Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas.

Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo was seventh ahead of the Lotus of Romain Grosjean.

Sauber continued with its impressive season, getting both its cars in Q3 for the first time since the 2013 United States Grand Prix, with Felipe Nasr ahead of Marcus Ericsson.

Lotus driver Pastor Maldonado finished 11th, ahead of a trio of Red Bull-owned cars in a difficult session for the energy drinks-backed outfits.

Daniil Kvyat, who has struggled with brake issues all weekend, could only manage 12th position.

Red Bull at least managed to outperform its sister team Toro Rosso, however, with Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz finishing down in 13th and 14th places respectively.

Sergio Perez qualified in 15th position in the Force India.

The Mexican's teammate Nico Hulkenberg will start from 16th position after being knocked out in Q1 in a very tight first segment, when the top 18 cars were separated by just 1.7 seconds.

McLaren's drivers failed to reach Q2 for the third consecutive grand prix, with Jenson Button in 17th and Fernando Alonso in 18th after a mistake by the Spaniard on his final flyer.

The Manor cars of Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi finished at the bottom of the times again, the Briton nearly three seconds behind his closest rival.

Merhi finished last, over 3.5 seconds off the pace.

Chinese Grand Prix qualifying results
 DriverQ1Q2Q3
01   L. Hamilton 1:38.285 1:36.423 1:35.782
02   N. Rosberg 1:38.496 1:36.747 1:35.824
03   S. Vettel 1:37.502 1:36.957 1:36.687
04   F. Massa 1:38.433 1:37.357 1:36.954
05   V. Bottas 1:38.014 1:37.763 1:37.143
06   K. Räikkönen 1:37.790 1:37.109 1:37.232
07   D. Ricciardo 1:38.534 1:37.939 1:37.540
08   R. Grosjean 1:38.209 1:38.063 1:37.905
09   F. Nasr 1:38.521 1:38.017 1:38.067
10   M. Ericsson 1:38.941 1:38.127 1:38.158
11   P. Maldonado 1:38.563 1:38.134  
12   D. Kvyat 1:39.051 1:38.209  
13   M. Verstappen 1:38.387 1:38.393  
14   C. Sainz 1:38.622 1:38.538  
15   S. Pérez 1:38.903 1:39.290  
16   N. Hülkenberg 1:39.216    
17   J. Button 1:39.276    
18   F. Alonso 1:39.280    
19   W. Stevens 1:42.091    
20   R. Merhi 1:42.842    
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