Nico Rosberg claimed a front row start for Sunday's Canadian Grand Prix but was left to rue a lack of grip on his fastest lap that left him trailing Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton.

The German appeared to have gained an advantage over Hamilton after FP3, where he topped the times and the world champion was left struggling in 20th position after failing to get a clean lap, but the tables were turned when it mattered most, with Hamilton posting the fastest time in Q2 and then proceeding to lead the final phase of qualifying from start to finish.

Three-tenths separated the pair after their opening salvos and, when neither was able to better their first effort later in the 12-minute final phase, Hamilton claimed his sixth pole of the year.

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"That's definitely the best way to sum it up....," Rosberg said when asked about his comment that Q3 had been 'a rubbish way to end qualifying', "I was really on a roll, feeling good, and then the end just didn't come together at all.

"I was just struggling with grip and this and that, so it didn't work out and we need to analyse now what it was. I had less rear grip, on the first set [of tyres] especially. It was a good lap, but I just didn't go much quicker. It's disappointing but fair play to Lewis..."

Rosberg denied that there had been any changes to the car between the final phases of qualifying, and that there had just been a lack of grip, but admitted that he felt he was struggling to justify falling short of his team-mate.

"It's always difficult to explain it because it's all excuses, excuses, excuses," he noted, "It even bothers me to say these things... and that's what makes it difficult to say what went wrong at the end in Q3."

Despite that, the German was not giving up entirely, viewing Sunday's race - and the unpredictability of the Canadian Grand Prix - as a reason to remain positive.

"There are still good chances and, here, it is possible to overtake so it's not all over yet," he pointed out, "Strategy-wise, there are some things which might be interesting, and there is the unknown also, such as the rain we had on Friday. Not everybody knows what will happen in the race, so we will have to do a little bit of guesswork and all that could help me."


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Nico maybe not on par but the team isn't really helping him, added by the publicly known fact that he is favored by Lauda and Toto, only a blunder would make Nico win such as in Monaco which is a result of mis-communication. So if that is the environment in Mercedes, how would Nico be motivated to raise his game.