The two Mercedes drivers, Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg pushed one another to the hilt in an entertaining qualifying session on Saturday. Hamilton looked top-class as he once again beat Rosberg in qualifying to take pole position for the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday. Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen and Red Bull's Max Verstappen will start in third and fourth place.
The focus, without a shadow of doubt, will lie on Hamilton and Rosberg, who are battling it out for the world title. Rosberg, as of now, is strong favourite, and he can even clinch his first maiden title on Sunday if he manages to cross the Brazilian GP chequered flag first.
Hamilton has no alternative; he has to win the Brazilian Grand Prix, and see what happens in the final race of the season. To be fair, things are not in favour of Hamilton, who has never won the Brazilian Grand Prix in his career. The defending champion also spoke about the short track, and with rains expected for tomorrow, Hamilton just wants to give his best shot in Brazil.
"This is an incredible circuit, even though it's so short, it's incredibly technical and the smallest time makes the biggest difference. It feels a little bit like Donington, sorry Brands Hatch where you can be so close, it's such a short track. But tomorrow, I hope that, whatever the weather brings, we are prepared we are prepared as a team and I give it everything I've got," F1's official website quoted Hamilton as saying.
This year has been brilliant for the Mercedes, who have dominated like no other. In the 19 races so far, they have won 17 of them. Hamilton will come into this race in Brazil confident after his back-to-back wins in United States and Mexico. He looked in top form, and it seemed that no one could beat him.
Hamilton might be starting pole, but some of his starts this season have not been good. Rosberg is aware of that, and he will go for the kill from the first turn, which will make matters really interesting.
"I'm looking forward; I'm going to try and get Lewis into Turn One. That's the plan. Obviously it's not going to be easy and the run to Turn One is very short here so that doesn't help, of course but I'll try everything I can, definitely," Rosberg said.
The Mercedes drivers cannot afford any hiccup at the final stretch of the season as they are aware of teams like Red Bull and Ferrari, who will be keen to take advantage of it. Raikkonen, who will be behind Rosberg and Hamilton, will look to improve on Sunday.
"I think we're lacking a bit of downforce overall there, comparing maybe to the guys in front of us – but you know the car's been behaving today, pretty good and just been struggling on the tight corners to turn around the car. As I said, it was not ideal, the lap, but it was good enough for third place and even making a perfect lap it wouldn't be fast enough for Mercedes today. But, y'know, tomorrow is another day and we try to improve," Vettel said.
Race timings for Brazilian Grand Prix: 2:00 p.m. local time,9:30 p.m. IST
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