Nico Rosberg scored his third successive pole position as Mercedes locked out the front row for the second consecutive race.
Fastest in all three practice sessions, Rosberg followed that up when it mattered most by taking top spot on the grid ahead of today’s Monaco Grand Prix.
For a split second it appeared as if Hamilton would beat his team-mate, only to be ousted from pole by 0.091secs by the German, who was also on pole in Bahrain and Spain.
From such a mighty position, and unlike in the last two races when Mercedes have gone backwards, Rosberg and Hamilton should now be in a position to go on to take the chequered flag given the difficulty in overtaking around the streets of the principality. Behind the Mercedes duo is a second-row lock-out for Red Bull, with triple world champion Sebastian Vettel ahead of Mark Webber.
Lotus’ Kimi Raikkonen, four points behind Vettel in the championship standings, starts fifth and is joined on the third row by Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso.
McLaren’s Sergio Perez managed to get the upper hand on team-mate Jenson Button as the pair line up seventh and ninth, either side of Adrian Sutil in his Force India, with Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne in 10th place.
Q1 still produced a shock, with Paul Di Resta failing to make it into Q2, leaving the Scot to start from 17th, equalling the worst grid slot of his career going back to the Belgian GP of 2011.
Ferrari’s Felipe Massa starts at the back of the grid after a heavy shunt in final practice, smashing into a barrier as he attempted to turn into Ste Devote at the end of the start-finish straight.