WATCH LIVE: German GP Qualifying – Nico versus Lewis

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If practice is anything to go by, we’ve got another all-Mercedes tussle for pole position during qualifying for the German Grand Prix as Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg lock horns once again.

The two championship protagonists are separated by just four points, and although you get nothing for pole position on a Saturday, at Hockenheim, starting from P1 will give you a clear advantage heading into the sweeping first corner.

You can watch qualifying for the German Grand Prix live on CNBC from 8am ET. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

Rosberg appeared to have the upper hand in the final practice session on Saturday morning as he gapped Hamilton by a full six-tenths of a second. The Briton did complain of a problem with his brakes, and as we saw during FP2 on Friday, he certainly has the pace to edge out the home favorite this weekend.

Another German driver, Sebastian Vettel, will be hoping to prove in qualifying that he has the pace to get in the mix for just his third podium finish of the season. His championship defence has wilted this year thanks to the RB10 car, but a good result at home will still be his objective. The likes of Fernando Alonso, Kimi Raikkonen, Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas may have something to say about that, though.

You can watch qualifying for the German Grand Prix live on CNBC from 8am ET. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

F1 2017 driver review: Sebastian Vettel

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Sebastian Vettel

Team: Scuderia Ferrari
Car No.: 5
Races: 20
Wins: 5
Podiums (excluding wins): 8
Pole Positions: 4
Fastest Laps: 5
Points: 317
Laps Led: 286
Championship Position: 2nd

2017 was supposed to be the year Sebastian Vettel finally fulfilled his ambition of emulating Michael Schumacher by returning Ferrari to its championship-winning heyday.

Instead, it ended in disappointment and frustration – once again.

Ferrari arguably made a greater step across the change in technical regulations for 2017 than any other team, living up to its pre-season tag as favorite by winning the opening round in Australia in fashion.

Vettel and Ferrari led their respective championships following the Monaco Grand Prix as the German ended a 16-year win drought for the Prancing Horse in the principality, and even heading into the summer break, a shot at both championships was looking good.

However, cracks had started to appear. Vettel’s remarkable antics behind the safety car in Baku sparked controversy after driving into Hamilton, suggesting the tension of the title fight was beginning to take its toll on the German.

The final run of flyaways was where things really fell apart for Vettel, though. Singapore looked to be a slam-dunk win, only for a start-line crash also involving teammate Kimi Raikkonen and Max Verstappen to put 25 free points in Hamilton’s pocket.

Reliability woes then struck in Malaysia and Japan – two more races Vettel could realistically have won – to make it game over in the title race, with Hamilton wrapping things up in Mexico.

Vettel only finished the year 46 points back from Hamilton, proving the impact the three bad races in Asia had. Realistically, this was a title race that should have gone down to the wire in Abu Dhabi. Instead, Vettel remains a four-time champion, level with Hamilton, who had just one to his name back in 2013 when his rival secured his fourth.

Ferrari’s internal issues will come under the microscope over the off-season, and Vettel himself knows there is plenty to work on. Staying cool under pressure and not letting things boil over as in Baku is the most obvious area for improvement.

But there is reason for hope. If Ferrari can keep up with Mercedes and repeat its impressive step into 2017 through the upcoming off-season, we may well be treated to another Vettel/Hamilton scrap at the front of the field, perhaps settling once and for all who is the greatest driver of the post-Schumacher era.

Season High: A crucial win in Hungary despite battling with a broken steering column.

Season Low: Letting tensions flare in Baku and hitting Hamilton behind the safety car.