Daniel Ricciardo was sixth fastest driver, 0.6s behind Kimi. Daniil Kvyat, his team-mate, failed to reach Q3 for the second time in three appearances, taking 12th. Romain Grosjean was eighth for Lotus, while his team-mate Pastor Maldonado missed out on Q3 by just 0.007s and will start 11th. Sauber was the midfield underdog starring in Q3 this time, securing the fifth row places with Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson.
By contrast the Toro Rossos were left out in Q2. Max Verstappen, who locked up heavily on his last run, and Carlos Sainz Jr share row seven. McLaren's encouraging Friday times proved deceptive as Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso found themselves out in Q1 and on row nine, just 0.004s apart. They were at least within a tenth of the Force Indias.
Nico Hulkenberg only got ahead of Button with a final Q1 effort, while Sergio Perez scraped through into Q2 then languished seven tenths off the Toro Rossos. The Manor-run Marussias were 3s off the tail of the field but made the 107 per cent target in Q1 so are both clear to start the race, Will Stevens ahead of Roberto Merhi.
Asphalt temperatures peaked at 35 degrees today, which was by some margin the warmest track temperature seen so far in China this year. Similar conditions are expected for the race at 2pm tomorrow, with a negligible risk of rain.
|2.||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes||1:35.824||+ 0.042||SOFT||12|
|3.||Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari||1:36.687||+ 0.905||SOFT||17|
|4.||Felipe Massa||Williams||1:36.954||+ 1.172||SOFT||15|
|5.||Valtteri Bottas||Williams||1:37.143||+ 1.361||SOFT||15|
|6.||Kimi Raikkonen||Ferrari||1:37.232||+ 1.450||SOFT||17|
|7.||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing||1:37.540||+ 1.758||SOFT||18|
|8.||Romain Grosjean||Lotus||1:37.905||+ 2.123||SOFT||20|
|9.||Felipe Nasr||Sauber||1:38.067||+ 2.285||SOFT||16|
|10.||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber||1:38.158||+ 2.376||SOFT||15|
|Q2||FASTEST TIME||LEWIS HAMILTON||1:36.423|
|11.||Pastor Maldonado||Lotus||1:38.134||+ 1.711||13|
|12.||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull Racing||1:38.209||+ 1.786||13|
|13.||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso||1:38.393||+ 1.970||14|
|14.||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso||1:38.538||+ 2.115||14|
|15.||Sergio Perez||Force India||1:39.290||+ 2.867||10|
|Q1||FASTEST TIME||SEBASTIAN VETTEL||1:37.502|
|16.||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India||1:39.216||+ 1.714||6|
|17.||Jenson Button||McLaren||1:39.276||+ 1.774||6|
|18.||Fernando Alonso||McLaren||1:39.280||+ 1.778||8|
|19.||Will Stevens||Marussia||1:42.091||+ 4.589||6|
|20.||Roberto Merhi||Marussia||1:42.842||+ 5.340||8|
|Q1 107% Time||1:44.327|