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Vettel on pole for US GP

2012-11-17 21:26

Austin - Sebastian Vettel will start on pole for the United States Grand Prix after the Red Bull driver finished fastest in qualifying here on Saturday.

Vettel, who can wrap up his third consecutive Formula One title on Sunday, is joined on the front row by Lewis Hamilton on the Briton's penultimate start for McLaren.

Hamilton missed out on depriving Vettel, who will be competing in his 100th Grand Prix, of pole by a mere tenth of a second.

Vettel, who at 25 is aiming to become the youngest ever triple champion, can accomplish that feat if he outscores his nearest rival in the drivers' standings, Fernando Alonso by 15 points.

Alonso will have his work cut out to keep the title battle going to the season-decider in Brazil as he will set off from the fourth row of the grid.

The Ferrari driver came in ninth in qualifying, but will move up to eighth as Lotus driver Romain Grosjean, who posted the fourth quickest time, has been penalised five grid places after changing a gearbox.

Starting grid:

1. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) RedBull - Renault
2. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) McLaren
3. Mark Webber (Australia) RedBull - Renault
4. Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Lotus - Renault
5. Michael Schumacher (Germany) Mercedes
6. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari
7. Nico Huelkenberg (Germany) Force India - Mercedes
8. Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari
9. Romain Grosjean (France) Lotus - Renault
10. Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams - Renault
11. Bruno Senna (Brazil) Williams - Renault
12. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren
13. Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India - Mercedes
14. Jean-Eric Vergne (France) Toro Rosso - Ferrari
15. Sergio Perez (Mexico) Sauber - Ferrari
16. Kamui Kobayashi (Japan) Sauber - Ferrari
17. Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes
18. Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Toro Rosso - Ferrari
19. Timo Glock (Germany) Marussia - Cosworth
20. Charles Pic (France) Marussia - Cosworth
21. Vitaly Petrov (Russia) Caterham - Renault
22. Heikki Kovalainen (Finland) Caterham - Renault
23. Pedro de la Rosa (Spain) HRT - Cosworth
24. Narain Karthikeyan (India) HRT - Cosworth

AFP