Rosberg’s final lap was 0.377 of a second faster than Mercedes team-mate Hamilton, and the German became the eighth man in F1 history to record six straight poles, and its means Hamilton’s wait for a 50th pole position continues.
Lewis appeared mystified and slightly disappointed, his loss of form since winning his third world title at last month’s US Grand Prix continuing.
Speaking after the session, Hamilton said: “I’ve been struggling with the car all weekend, we’ve been working really hard to make some changes, we’ve had to take something off the car, but Nico was just really quick today and he did a great job in Q3.”
“It generally feels a little bit better in the race, but it’s been a while now I’m struggling on the edge with the car. I was a lot more comfortable at the beginning of the year.”
“Coming into this weekend I tried to make some changes and I disadvantaged myself maybe a little bit with one of the things that I took off the car.”
Hamilton also playing down the opportunity of overtaking chances in Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
“Nico got a pretty bad start and I got a good one. I am going to see what I can do.” The Brit told Sky Sports.
“It is [overtaking chances] tough because whilst you’ve got the DRS zone down the back straight, you can’t follow through turns two and three so the gap is normally pulled there and you might just catch it up a little bit down the straight. I would much, much rather be on pole and was working as hard as I could towards that.”