“Rosberg flies to pole in Monaco”

Nico Rosberg took his second pole position of the Formula One season in Monaco this afternoon, but not without a touch of controversy.

With a best of 1:15.989s, Rosberg nailed the pole slot, with his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton securing the 2nd place ahead of Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo.

Having lost the points lead in Spain, a feisty Rosberg was already on top of the pile following his first Q3 run, when error on his final fast lap politely pitched the German down the Mirabeau escape road.

The minor off brought out waved local yellow flags, signalling drivers to slow through the tight complex down into Loews hairpin. Already quicker than Rosberg in the first sector, Hamilton slowed for the yellow flags, losing his opportunity to assume the top spot.

Red Bull secured the second row all to themselves, with Ricciardo outdoing Sebastian Vettel, while Fernando Alonso comprehensively outpaced Kimi Raikkonen by seven-tenths to make it an all Ferrari row three.

Jean Eric Vergne did much to raise his profile by taking his Toro Rosso machine to 7th on the grid, pipping McLaren’s Kevin Magnussen by 0.015s in the process. Immediately behind Vergne is rookie teammate Daniil Kvyat, who recovered from an accident in Q1 to take 9th overall.

Sergio Perez rounded out the top ten. The Mexican will be pleased, not just to have made it into the final group, but to have also edged out teammate Nico Hulkenberg come the tail end of Q2.
For Hulkenberg, the German will have to deal with starting from 11th. The Force India man has McLaren’s Jenson Button behind him, in what proved to be a shocking Q2 for the former world champion – Button was outpaced by Magnussen by almost eight-tenths.

Valtteri Bottas was the highest Williams runner in 13th spot, taking the inside of the seventh row with Lotus’ Romain Grosjean alongside. It was another Williams-Lotus row eight, albeit with Pastor Maldonado assuming 15th ahead of Felipe Mass, who could not partake in the second session.

The first six cars to drop out represented something of a depressingly familiar affair. Both Sauber’s, Marussia’s and Caterham’s were firmly left behind, with Esteban Gutierrez and Adrian Sutil leading the way in 17th and 18th.
Jules Bianchi beat Marussia teammate Max Chilton to 19th and 20th respectively, while Kamui Kobyashi assumed 21st position ahead of Marcus Ericsson, who boldly crashed into Massa at the tail end of Q1.

2014 Monaco Grand Prix (Rd 6, Qualifying)
Pos Driver                Team                  Time 
 1. Nico Rosberg          Mercedes              1m15.989s         
 2. Lewis Hamilton        Mercedes              1m16.048s
 3. Daniel Ricciardo      Red Bull-Renault      1m16.384s
 4. Sebastian Vettel      Red Bull-Renault      1m16.547s
 5. Fernando Alonso       Ferrari               1m16.686s
 6. Kimi Raikkonen        Ferrari               1m17.389s
 7. Jean-Eric Vergne      Toro Rosso-Renault    1m17.540s
 8. Kevin Magnussen       McLaren-Mercedes      1m17.555s
 9. Daniil Kvyat          Toro Rosso-Renault    1m18.090s
10. Sergio Perez          Force India-Mercedes  1m18.327s
11. Nico Hulkenberg       Force India-Mercedes  1m17.846s
12. Jenson Button         McLaren-Mercedes      1m17.988s
13. Valtteri Bottas       Williams-Mercedes     1m18.082s
14. Romain Grosjean       Lotus-Renault         1m18.196s
15. Pastor Maldonado      Lotus-Renault         1m18.356s
16. Felipe Massa          Williams-Mercedes     {no Q2 time} 
17. Esteban Gutierrez     Sauber-Ferrari        1m18.741s
18. Adrian Sutil          Sauber-Ferrari        1m18.745s
19. Jules Bianchi         Marussia-Cosworth     1m19.332s
20. Max Chilton           Marussia-Cosworth     1m19.928s
21. Kamui Kobayashi       Caterham-Renault      1m20.133s
22. Marcus Ericsson       Caterham-Renault      1m21.732s
    107% cut-off time:                          1m22.985s

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