The final qualifying session of the season threw an early shocker with the elimination of Sebastian Vettel at Q1—the Ferrari driver is set to start the race at P16. Vettel didn’t turn a fast enough first run and seemed to have abandoned his second, later run in the middle of the lap and by the time the clock ran out, he was uncharacteristically pinned in the knock out zone at sixteenth place.
As early as Q1, the Force India duo of Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg stole the show, setting the third and fourth fastest times respectively, not far behind the two Mercedes. Perez again posted the third quickest time in Q2, which saw the Lotus of Romain Grosjean retire during his out lap for what would have been his one-and-only run as the clock wound down.
In an exhilarating Q3 however, Kimi Raikkonen deposed Perez from P3, relegating the Mexican to fourth while Hulkenberg qualified seventh. Up front, the two Silver Arrows provided some fireworks with a nip and tuck battle for pole position. Ultimately, it was Nico Rosberg who attained pole for the sixth-straight race, as he continues his dominance over teammate Lewis Hamilton in terms of qualifying pace to close out the season. Continue reading “Abu Dhabi GP Notebook”