Nico Rosberg edges out Lewis Hamilton in final practice

Updated: Nov 13, 2016, 14:39 IST | PA Sport |

Championship leader Nico Rosberg edged out Lewis Hamilton in final practice for the Brazilian Grand Prix

Nico Rosberg
Nico Rosberg

Sao Paulo: Championship leader Nico Rosberg edged out Lewis Hamilton in final practice for the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Rosberg, who leads Hamilton in the title race by 19 points with only two rounds remaining, finished behind his Mercedes team-mate in both practice sessions on Friday.

But the German, who will be crowned world champion with victory here on Sunday, headed the order at Interalgos this morning.

After the early drizzle cleared to leave a dry track, Rosberg's best lap of one minute and 11.740 seconds was just 0.093 seconds quicker than Hamilton.

Sebastian Vettel, whose Ferrari team lost their appeal against his demotion from third to fifth at the recent Mexican Grand Prix, was third in the order with his team-mate Kimi Raikkonen fourth.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff phoned Max Verstappen's father Jos earlier this week in a bid to urge the Red Bull teenager to stay out of the scrap for the championship. The Dutchman finished fifth on Saturday morning ahead of his Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo.

British rookie Jolyon Palmer, who has secured a second season with Renault, was an impressive eighth with Jenson Button, the 2009 world champion, only 18th.

Rain is forecast to play a role in qualifying later on Saturday and for what will be a pivotal race in the championship, too.

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