Lewis Hamilton on pole ahead of team-mate Nico Rosberg in Shanghai World champion takes the 41st pole of his career by nearly a second over Sebastian Vettel in third

It is not hard to imagine what Lewis Hamilton might have muttered from his helmet after dispatching the opposition to take pole position for the Chinese Grand Prix. ‘Ferrari? What about Ferrari?!’

After Sebastian Vettel’s victory in Malaysia two weeks ago, this was a reassertion of Hamilton and Mercedes’ authority at the front of Formula One. In the end it was the Briton’s team-mate, Nico Rosberg, who came the closest to spoiling his 100 per cent record in qualifying this year.

When the news was broken to Rosberg that he had fallen short by four hundredths of a second, he let out a frustrated groan. “Oh, come on guys,” the German said. He added afterwards: “Four hundredths – that makes it even more annoying and disappointing. It is the blink of an eye really.”