Vettel on pole again

Vettel on pole again

German driver tops qualifying for fifth time in a row

The German, so comfortable with his time that he was parked up in the garage and out of the car with a minute of the final session still to run, was joined at the front by Australian team mate Mark Webber. Vettel’s time of one minute 25.049 seconds, was 0.405 quicker than Webber.

It was Red Bull’s third Turkish pole in a row and, in a race that has always been won by a driver starting from the first two places, left the champions with high hopes of being third time lucky -- providing they stay clear of each other.

Vettel and Webber, who was on pole in 2010, were heading for a one-two last year when they collided while fighting for the lead, handing a one-two to McLaren's Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button instead.

“I am very happy and very pleased after the bad shunt yesterday and the work load I managed to give to all the mechanics,” grinned Vettel, who missed Friday's second practice after crashing heavily in the morning.

“It was a pretty big hit. They did a very good job and I had a fantastic car today,” added the German, who showed he had also learned a lesson from the last Chinese Grand Prix by not going out for a final lap and saving a set of fresh tyres.

“We talked about it before the qualifying,” the championship leader, winner of the first two races, said of his decision to end the session early. “Both of us after the first run had the feeling we might be safe... but in the end you never know. If it works you are the hero but if it doesn’t you are not.”

Hamilton, who beat Vettel in Shanghai on strategy after saving a set of tyres and doing one more stop than the German, will start in fourth place and with Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg alongside.

Ferrari’s double world champion Fernando Alonso qualified fifth with Button, winner in 2009 after Vettel had taken pole, back in sixth place.

The pole was the 19th of Vettel’s career, one more than Hamilton, and left him just three short of equalling the late triple champion Ayrton Senna’s record of eight in a row set in 1988/89.

Vettel leads the standings with 68 points after three races, with Hamilton on 47, Button on 38 and Webber 37.

Sutil, di Resta disappoint

Force India’s Adrian Sutil missed out on Q3 yet again but out-qualified team-mate Paul di Resta for the first time in the current season by securing the 12th position on the grid.

Di Resta will start just behind Sutil in the 13th position while ace Indian driver Hispania Racing Team’s Narain Karthikeyan qualified 23rd.

Sutil’s fastest lap in Saturday’s qualifying session was one minute 27.027 seconds, slightly better than his Scot team-mate, who managed 1 minute 27.145 seconds in Q2.
Sutil was seventh fastest in Q1 but could not better it while di Resta was 12th in Q1 and slipped further in Q2.

Turkish GP starting grid

Driver                                    Country                 Team        
1. Sebastian Vettel               Germany        Red Bull
2. Mark Webber                    Australia        Red Bull
3. Nico Rosberg                    Germany        Mercedes
4. Lewis Hamilton                  Britain           McLaren
5. Fernando Alonso               Spain            Ferrari
6. Jenson Button                   Britain            McLaren
7. Vitaly Petrov                      Russia           Renault
8. Michael Schumacher          Germany        Mercedes
9. Nick Heidfeld                     Germany        Renault
10. Felipe Massa                    Brazil              Ferrari

Others: 11. Rubens Barrichello (Williams) 12. Adrian Sutil (Force India). 13. Paul di Resta (Force India). 14. Pastor Maldonado (Williams). 15. Sergio Perez (Sauber). 16. Sebastien Buemi (Toro Rosso) 17. Jaime Alguersuari (Toro Rosso). 18. Heikki Kovalainen (Lotus). 19. Jarno Trulli (Lotus). 20. Jerome d’Ambrosio (Virgin). 21. Vitantonio Liuzzi (HRT). 22. Timo Glock (Virgin). 23. Narain Karthikeyan (HRT). 24. Kamui Kobayashi (Sauber).