Nico Rosberg celebrates 'fantastic' first Formula 1 pole position

Nico Rosberg described taking his first Formula 1 pole position at his 111th attempt as 'fantastic'

Nico Rosberg celebrates 'fantastic' first Formula 1 pole position

The 26-year-old German set the fastest time in qualifying for the Chinese Grand Prix - a 1m35.121s -which proved to be just over half a second faster than his nearest rival's best in Q3.

It was also Mercedes' first pole position as a manufacturer team since Juan Manuel Fangio took the top spot for the 1955 Italian Grand Prix.

"It went really well and it's a very special feeling," Rosberg said. "Now obviously l am looking forward to starting first and the race!

"The track was was cooling off, the temperatures were coming down, so the rear tyres started working better. We changed setup before the last run and I did a perfect lap."

Mercedes was always expected to be strong in qualifying for China, where the long straight plays to the advantages of its unique 'double DRS' system, and team-mate Michael Schumacher will line up alongside Rosberg on the front row when second-placed Lewis Hamilton's gearbox-change grid penalty is taken into account.

Rosberg admitted however that he is more concerned about the W03's race pace given its propensity to burn through tyres in long runs.

"It is clear in the race we have not been as quick as in qualifying, but we are making progress, we will try our best and work tonight and see what we can do with setup electronically and then make the most of it," he said.

"It is a great feeling, getting a good lap in at the end and it shows as a team we are moving forward. In the race we are not there yet but we are getting there, we won't make big jumps in a couple of weeks, it will take some time, but we are getting there.

"It's difficult to know how well we will go tomorrow, so let's wait and see."

Rosberg first lap in Q3 was that much faster than the opposition that in the end he only chose to do one flying lap, opting to sit out the final minutes as his rivals tried to better his time, but he said the decision was a sound one.

"We just decided to save another set of tyres," he added, "it was a good lap and saving a set was good for the race as the points are for the race not qualifying."

shares
comments
Sebastian Vettel has no regrets over sticking with old exhaust after qualifying 11th for Chinese GP

Previous article

Sebastian Vettel has no regrets over sticking with old exhaust after qualifying 11th for Chinese GP

Next article

China Saturday quotes: HRT

China Saturday quotes: HRT
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Nico Rosberg
Author Simon Strang
What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track Plus

What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track

Mercedes may find itself leading the drivers' and constructors' standings after Lewis Hamilton's victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix, but it is well-aware that it came against the odds, with Red Bull clearly ahead on pace. Here's what the Brackley team must do to avoid its crown slipping

Why Tsunoda can become Japan’s greatest F1 talent Plus

Why Tsunoda can become Japan’s greatest F1 talent

While Japan's fever for motor racing is well-documented, the country has yet to produce a Formula 1 superstar – but that could be about to change, says BEN EDWARDS

Why the demise of F1's hypocritical spending habit is cause for celebration Plus

Why the demise of F1's hypocritical spending habit is cause for celebration

For too long, F1's richest teams have justified being able to spend as much as they want because that's the way they've always conducted their business. STUART CODLING says that's no reason not to kick a bad habit

Formula 1
Apr 14, 2021
The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate Plus

The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate

It's been a tough start to Sebastian Vettel's Aston Martin F1 career, with a lack of pre-season testing mileage followed by an incident-packed Bahrain GP. But two key underlying factors mean a turnaround is not guaranteed

Formula 1
Apr 14, 2021
The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition Plus

The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition

In 2017 new F1 technical regulations were supposed to add drama - and peg Mercedes back. STUART CODLING looks at the car which, while troubled, set the stage for the wide-bodied Formula 1 era

Formula 1
Apr 13, 2021
The themes to watch in F1’s Imola return Plus

The themes to watch in F1’s Imola return

Three weeks is a long time in Formula 1, but in the reshaped start to the 2021 season the teams head to Imola to pick things up after the frenetic Bahrain opener. Here's what to look out for and the developments to follow at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

Formula 1
Apr 13, 2021
The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Plus

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. BEN ANDERSON looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021