Hello and welcome to ESPN's coverage of qualifying for the Brazilian Grand Prix in Interlagos.

Nico Rosberg has been on fine form this weekend and topped all three practice sessions. He's just one pole away from winning the inaugural FIA Pole Trophy.

Not that Rosberg will care much about the Pole Trophy of course, he comes into today knowing he needs to beat Hamilton this weekend to avoid any talk of double points being the reason why.

Rosberg has seemed to find an extra gear on Saturdays this season but has only converted two of his pole positions into victories - something which ultimately has left him on the back foot coming into this weekend.

Lots of talk emerging again this weekend around the subject of third cars. Financial uncertainty still threatening the smaller teams on the grid.

It's a shame such an entertaining season is going to end with such a cloud hanging over it; it's a grim reminder at the realities facing F1 at the moment. The sport has done itself more harm in the past weeks from a PR perspective.

Some engines are revving here in the paddock. Just over ten minutes away from the beginning of qualifying.

No rain yet today after last night's huge thunderstorm. Rain never far away at this circuit, though.

Easy to forget Hulkenberg's shock podium here in 2010. Fascinated to see how Force India do this weekend after looking really down on pace in the practice sessions.

Just over five minutes to go until qualifying. Lots of questions behind the Mercedes pair; we saw good long run pace from Red Bull but over one lap, there seems to be a mix of cars. Raikkonen has been better than Alonso all weekend so far

If you are interested, here's how you can fund Caterham's return to the grid....

No doubt the Brazil crowd will be eager to see a pole for local favourite Massa this afternoon. This the scene of his last career victory in 2008...

The short lap here at Interlagos means there's even more punishment for making a mistake, with less time to make up for lost ground.

Remember the qualifying format has been tweaked with no Caterham and Marussia present. We'll have four people out in Q1 and then four again in Q2.

The clock is ticking - qualifying is under way but no-one heads straight out.

We have some noise and activity in the pit lane and it's the Sauber of Sutil which ventures out on track.

Remember, penalties are hanging over Kvyat (six-place) and Perez (seven-place).

Ricciardo and Gutierrez venture out on track as it starts to get busier. Ricciardo is told there is low wind currently at the circuit.

Everyone out on soft tyres straight away.

Sutil sets the initial benchmark, a 1:13.401.

But he's immediately replaced by Gutierrez by three tenths.

Massa and Bottas out on the medium tyre, someting Williams often does for its first run in qualifying to see if it can save a set of medium tyres.

Interestingly, Hamilton and Rosberg have gone straight out on soft tyres. Seems Button and Magnussen have opted for mediums, like Williams.

Tyre-saving may not be such an issue here if we have some rain.

Let's see if Hamilton can get back on top of his game. He looked a little off his best in practice this morning.

Hulkenberg takes P1 but is soon replaced at the top by Bottas with a 1:11.834. Hamilton on a flyer though.

Massa crosses in first, but Hamilton then goes fastest - lowering the target to 1:11.223.

Times coming thick and fast and Rosberg knocks half a second off his team-mate's time to take the top spot. Both Ferraris out on the soft tyre.

Alonso getting emotional on the radio. Asks why he has got limited battery in this session. Looks like he was passed by a Lotus on the start finish straight.

Replay shows him gesticulating angrily in the cockpit.

Vettel the only man yet to emerge from the pit lane.

"Ay ay ay!" was the message from Alonso. He had no battery at the start of the lap and was not happy about it.

Hamilton goes fastest with his next lap, going purple in all three sectors - that's the fastest-ever qualifying lap at Interlagos. A 1:10.457.

But Rosberg then lowers than by a tenth!

Alonso, meanwhile, is third after having that earlier moan about his battery.

Vettel ventures out on track. He's the only man yet to set a time.

The McLarens have switched off the medium tyres and onto softs. Both Button and Magnussen out on track so McLaren clearly not satisfied those runs wouldn't get them through to Q1. Button's time suggests that is the case.

Ricciardo tells Red Bull the track is very dirty in places, with lots of marbles.

Vettel backs out of his flying lap after going green in the first two sectors. He'll have to hook it together on his next lap. He asks Red Bull to alert him about a charge change sooner in the lap.

Magnussen improves to fourth fastest, behind Button who had just crossed the line seven tenths down on Rosberg. Just 0.03s between the McLarens.

Three minutes left.

Vettel improves to 12th, 1.5s off the lead.

Williams clearly does not feel safe as both its drivers have emerged with soft tyres and you can see why - their drivers are tumbling down the order.

Ricciardo puts himself into ninth with his latest run.

Perez in the drop zone but has just done a personal best in the first sector. Team-mate Hulkenberg had to bail out of a lap of his own and he's in rather dangerous territory himself.

Vettel also in real trouble, but he's gone green in the first sector.

Perez can't improve on that time. He crosses with 30 seconds to go so he'll have another crack at that...

Vettel also fails to improve! Can anyone knock the world champion into the drop zone?

Grosjean improves but not enough to leap out of the drop zone.

Sutil can't improve either and Perez isn't going to, he's backed away. Raikkonen puts himself seventh fastest.

Maldonado can't improve on 18th - that's your lot.

Grosjean, Vergne, Perez and Maldonado drop out. Disappointment for Vergne with Kvyat getting through in eighth.

"Sorry but the car was undriveable. Sorry" - Vergne on dropping out of that session.

That won't have done him any favours if rumours are to be believed he's in talks with Toro Rosso about staying on next year.

Though we have seem some fantastic aggressive drives from Vergne recently so he'll need to repeat that in tomorrow's race.

Seeing a replay of a big lock up for Maldonado. He was three tenths off safety in that session.

Every headline time set on the soft tyres in that last session and we can expect to see the yellow stripe from here on in.

Lots of grey clouds forming above the circuit.

The green light is on for Q2 but, like the first session, no-one is in an immediate hurry to get out straight away.

But that doesn't last long as Hulkenberg scurries out. Let's see if he can rekindle some of his 2010 magic from this circuit....

The Saubers join Hulkenberg out on the circuit.

If rain does arrive in this session, these early dry laps could be even more crucial.

Hulkenberg puts himself into P1 with a 1:12.306.

Sutil has a moment at Juncao and bounces across the grass. Looks like he just lost the rear coming through that section.

Hamilton and Rosberg are both out on track.

Hamilton goes fastest with a 1:10.712 but that's immediately bested by Rosberg, who shaves four tenths off his Mercedes team-mate.

Raikkonen currently third, Alonso on a much neater second lap too.

Alonso improves to fourth but is two tenths off Raikkonen in third.

Massa puts himself into third, 0.556s off Rosberg.

Bottas jumps above his team-mate into third - he went faster than anyone through the final sector.

Button puts his car sixth, as Vettel slots in just behind him.

Magnussen knocks Vettel down to seventh. He's less than a tenth behind Button.

A bit of a lull in proceedings here then so interesting to see who feels the need to go back out again. Still no times from Sutil, who had that earlier off, Kvyat or Ricciardo. In fact, Ricciardo is yet to emerge from the garage in this session.

Here's what happened to Sutil.

McLaren tells Button it thinks he will be safe and that he'll stay in the pits - albeit, ready to go if absolutely necessary. He's a second clear of Gutierrez in 11th.

Hulkenberg the only man out on track. His fellow countryman Rosberg complaining to Mercedes about rear tyre overheating.

Oh dear. Not a great start to Hulkenberg's latest lap as he locks up into Turn 1 with a squeal of tyres.

The Ferraris are out on track,and now joined by Ricciardo.

Hulkenberg went green in all three sectors and, though he improves by three tenths, he is still 10th for now.

All the Q2 contenders except from Mercedes and Kvyat out for final laps now.

Alonso improves from 9th to 7th with his latest lap, before Raikkonen improves to sixth.

50 seconds left now.

Ricciardo has just one chance to get into Q3. He's gone green in the first sector.

For some reason Kvyat decided against doing a timed lap in this session.

Ricciardo improves to seventh and knocks Gutierrez down into the drop zone. Vettel now in a spot of bother but he then jumps into sixth which pushes Alonso into tenth. .....

But Sutil is the only man who can knock Alonso out - he can't do it. Massa gets the crowd on their feet as he goes second, just 0.03s off the pace of Rosberg. Are we in for a close final session in Interlagos?

Gutierrez, Hulkenberg, Sutil and Kvyat out in Q2.

Massa gets a standing ovation as he is wheeled back into the garage.

The sky is darkening out there.

Here the times for you from that session, courtesy of Ferrari.

Not long left until Q3. Can Williams cause an upset here in Brazil? Imagine the reaction if Massa gets on pole here....

The clock is ticking. Here we go then.

No action early on. But Hamilton changes that as he heads out from the garage.

Remember, Barrichello's pole lap record is 1:10.646. Rosberg beat that in both Q1 and Q2 but it is the final time which counts, as those times are deleted if you advance.

Only the two Mercedes drivers out on track so far.

Also, it's a good idea to get a banker lap in early in case any rain does decide to start coming down any time soon.

Hamilton crosses the line with a 1:10.195 so that Barrichello record will be broken, but Rosberg also on a great lap.

Rosberg crosses the line just 0.03s quicker than Hamilton! That's provisional pole for the German. The final shootout between those two is going to be superb.

Everyone but the Ferraris out on track now.

Bottas has a big lock up on his flying lap, which won't have helped matters very much.

Despite that Bottas is less than two tenths down on Rosberg, Incredibly close.

AND that was on a scruffy lap.

Massa improves on his team-mate! Cheers from the crowd as he does so. He's less than a tenth of a second off Rosberg! We're in for an almighty finish to qualifying here.

There's just 0.139s between Rosberg and Bottas. They head back to the pits in preparation for their final runs at the end of the session.

Raikkonen heads out very early as the clock ticks past four minutes remaining.

Ricciardo joins Raikkonen out on track. Three minutes left.

I have to concur with that last tweet.

All ten cars out on track.

Raikkonen goes seventh with his first Q3 lap. That's nine tenths off the lead.

One minute left. Here we go!

Hamilton does a personal best first and second sector but appears to lock up into Turn 10. He needs a huge final sector to take pole.

Hamilton goes P1!!! Is it going to be enough?

Rosberg takes pole position at Interlagos! By 0.033s!

Massa makes a mistake in the middle sector and bails out of the lap.

That will be enough for Rosberg to win that Pole Trophy.

Seeing a replay of Hamilton's monster slide through Turn 10 and that was enough to deny him pole position.

That's Rosberg's tenth pole position of the season. This one he really needs to convert into a win, though.

Button turning in a very tidy lap for fifth. Vettel out-qualifies Ricciardo - who will line up ninth.

Massive cheers going up for Massa as he makes his way to the weigh-in. Imagine the reaction if he'd had a shot at pole late on...

Thanks as ever for joining our coverage of qualifying. Please do join us tomorrow for what should be a thrilling battle between the title-chasing Mercedes drivers.