Defending champion Lewis Hamilton was arguably lucky to survive, just beating out Haas F1 ace Romain Grosjean for the tenth fastest time.
During the Q3, Hamilton took provisional pole position, and in final attempt started perfectly and he thought he had sewn up pole, when Fernando Alonso went into a spin, bringing out a double yellow flag.
Rosberg slowed for the flag but was allowed to reaccelerate and complete his lap. His time of 1:19.965 was 1.4 tenths of a second faster than his Mercedes teammate and main rival.
The Brit has been giving his view on qualifying and has had this to say to Sky F1.
“I don’t find it frustrating. Firstly, I’m just grateful I got through to Q3, cause the start of my Q2 lap was pretty shocking so I just got through by the skin of my teeth.
“I mean, I was up and then surprised to see Fernando facing me when I came round through that second sector. It was a double yellow so it means completely back out and that’s what I did.”
On being told that Rosberg went on to set the fastest time in that middle sector, he was visibly surprised: “He went purple through the sector? Wow, that is a surprise.
“I’ve not seen it so I’m sure they’ll be investigating, even if you go green through a sector like that, with double yellow it means be prepared to stop.”
“It’s been a really scrappy weekend. I don’t know why because I feel good. I’ll make sure I sleep as much as I can tonight. I feel ready.
“It’s about time we got a win here with these hybrid engines.”