Nico Rosberg will start on pole position for Sunday's (18 September) Singapore Grand Prix.

The Mercedes driver, who has narrowed the gap on championship leader Lewis Hamilton to just two points with consecutive post-summer break victories at Spa and Monza, produced a blistering fastest lap of 1:42.584 to beat Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo.

That was 0.7 seconds quicker than his teammate and rival, who has endured a difficult weekend thus far and will start from third on the grid at the Marina Bay Street Circuit after a costly mistake at turn two on his flying lap.

"I am definitely happy with that one," Rosberg, who finished fastest in the final practice session, was quoted as saying by BBC Sport after sealing the 29th pole of his 199-race career.

"It was one of my top three laps ever. It wasn't clear in qualifying how we would stack up against Red Bull so I really had to give it everything and pull it out of the bag, which is cool."

A dejected Hamilton said: "It hasn't been my weekend so far. Nico did a great job. He showed the true potential of the car and I will do as good as I can to get at least one step up."

Nico Rosberg
Nico Rosberg will begin his 200th career grand prix on pole position MOHD RASFAN/AFP/Getty Images

Max Verstappen secured P4 and Kimi Raikkonen qualified in fifth, followed by Toro Rosso duo Carlos Sainz Jr and Daniil Kvyat, Nico Hulkenburg, Fernando Alonso and Sergio Perez.

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel, who has won four of the last five night races in Singapore, will line up in last place after being surprisingly eliminated in Q1 due to mechanical issues with his SF16-H.

He pitted late in an attempt to fix a problem with the anti-roll bar in his suspension that effectively left him drifting on three wheels but subsequently ran out of time. Haas' Romain Grosjean thankfully emerged unscathed after colliding with a sector two barrier in a crash that ended Q2 and caused the top-10 shootout to be delayed.