Lewis Hamilton beat Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari to pole position for the Malaysian Grand Prix by less than a tenth of a second in a rain-affected Formula 1 qualifying session.

Hamilton’s first flying lap on intermediate tyres in Q3 proved enough to secure top spot, as Vettel split the reigning F1 world champion from his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg by qualifying second.

The highest-profile casualty of the scramble for track position to get one dry lap in before the rain came was Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen.

The 2007 world champion was delayed at the final corner trying to pass Ericsson’s Sauber (the last car to make the cut in 10th) and by being passed by Hamilton’s Mercedes at Turn 1, and wound up only 11th fastest.

Scuderia Ferrari: Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari will line up on the front row of the grid for tomorrow’s Malaysian Grand Prix, after qualifying second in a session hit by a massive storm. The rain arrived at the Malaysian track towards the end of the second part of the session and that meant Kimi Raikkonen, eleventh at the time in 1.42.173, was unable to make the cut into the top ten. In the delayed final part, the German steered his SF15-T to second, running two sets of intermediate tyres, with a best lap of 1.49.908, splitting the two Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton, who took pole in 1.49.834 and Nico Rosberg third in 1.50.299.

Final Times:

Pos Driver Car Time Gap
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m49.834s
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m49.908s 0.074s
3 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m50.299s 0.465s
4 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 1m51.541s 1.707s
5 Daniil Kvyat Red Bull/Renault 1m51.950s 2.116s
6 Max Verstappen Toro Rosso/Renault 1m51.980s 2.146s
7 Felipe Massa Williams/Mercedes 1m52.473s 2.639s
8 Romain Grosjean Lotus/Mercedes 1m52.980s 3.146s
9 Valtteri Bottas Williams/Mercedes 1m53.179s 3.345s
10 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 1m53.260s 3.426s
11 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m42.173s
12 Pastor Maldonado Lotus/Mercedes 1m42.197s
13 Nico Hulkenberg Force India/Mercedes 1m43.022s
14 Sergio Perez Force India/Mercedes 1m43.468s
15 Carlos Sainz Toro Rosso/Renault 1m43.700s
16 Felipe Nasr Sauber/Ferrari 1m41.308s
17 Jenson Button McLaren/Honda 1m41.635s
18 Fernando Alonso McLaren/Honda 1m41.745s
19 Roberto Merhi Marussia/Ferrari 1m46.677s
20 Will Stevens Marussia/Ferrari


From – Kimi: “Obviously we got it wrong and should have been out earlier. That’s how it is. I’ve been pretty happy with the car, yesterday and this morning, and the laptime is thereabouts. I expected to be strong in qualifying, but this kind of thing is wasted. It’s part of the game, but it’s disappointing. To be quite good speed-wise, then this happens.”

From – Kimi: “I tried to overtake Ericsson because he was in front of me. But at the last corner I couldn’t slow down because there were other people pushing me forward. We just got the timing wrong. That’s how it ended up. I don’t know if it helps to blame anyone. It’s easy to say afterwards that I should have been waiting behind Sebastian but the end result is this and whatever we will do now will not change it. It’s not often that a car is completely perfect so there are always things we want to improve. It’s not the ideal feeling with the car, sliding a bit, but it’s part of being here in Malaysia. It’s very hot and I think you can see everybody has had issues. The lap time is good but the feeling could be better.”

Scuderia Ferrari – Kimi: “Today it was simply a bad time to go out, we should have been out earlier. I did try to pass Ericsson but he was there trying to do his job; it’s not an unlucky situation but it was a mistake. Tomorrow we’ll try to climb some positions, for sure we have the speed but we are quite far from the front and when you start in this position is not going to be an easy race. Obviously there is going to be more risk in the first corner, but we’ll try to make the best out of it tomorrow.”


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  1. But why on earth it is always him with bad luck???


    1. I think “bad luck” who targeting him, the rain came just at the exact time to deny him. However, I wonder why Kimi did not push when leaving pit lane like everybody else?


      1. He trusted his team, as usual. Hamilton also complained after Q3 to his team for sending him out too far in the queue. Kimi was also sent out late. Vettel was first out, they should’ve ensured Kimi was second behind at least.


  2. Speechless. I dare not expect anything this riund.


  3. Kimi’s laidback personality gets the best of him. Where others like Hamil and Alonso would go straight out aggresive from the green lights, kimi tends to fire up during the race.
    I’ve been looking at Kimi and his starts are quite slow.
    Yes kimi deserves credit, but he also needs to understand his own weaknesses to win


  4. Sorry I meant “laidback personality gets the better of him”


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