Indian GP: Sebastian Vettel secures pole, set for hat-trick of titles

Greater Noida, PTI | Updated : 27 October 2013, 09:01 AM

Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel grabbed the pole position for Sunday's Indian Grand Prix at Buddh International Circuit as home team Sahara Force India faded out in Q2.

With this, Vettel positioned himself perfectly for a fourth straight F1 world title.

Vettel clocked 1:24.119 to grab his third straight pole in India, seventh of the season and 43rd of his career as he beat Mercedes' Nico Rosberg by 0.752 seconds.

Vettel is now set for a hat-trick of victories at Indian GP as he also improved on his fastest lap in India.

Rosberg was followed by his teammate Lewis Hamilton (1:24.941) as Mercedes prevented a Red Bull lock out by pushing Mark Webber (1:25.047) to fourth. Felipe Massa outpaced his Ferrari teammate for the fourth time in the last five races to be fifth and next to him would be Kimi Raikkonen in his Lotus.

Sauber's Nico Hulkenberg was seventh, followed by Alonso and the two McLarens with Sergio Perez being ahead of Jenson Button.

Vettel now looks set to become youngest quadruple world champion as the 26-year old German needs to finish just fifth to seal the drivers championship, having a huge 90-points lead over Alonso.

"It has been a brilliant weekend. The car was very good. We did not change much. I like this circuit, I like the flow of the track especially around the middle sector, it's challenging with high speed corners. It's a great result for the team, let's see what the results brings tomorrow," Vettel said.

Vettel said he does not want to think about winning the championship.

"I am trying not to think about that although every second person in the paddock is asking the same thing. We have worked hard to be there but it's a long race. We have a quick package, so we should be in good shape."

Rosberg, who is confident of beating Vettel, said the hard work has paid off.

"We have been really pushing hard this week. We were trying to get that extra 10th from the car and until now it has worked. It is a strategy which will be the key. I am interested in strategy but it is very complex," the German said.

Hamilton, who had retired in the last race in Japan after starting third on the grid, said, "It's been a tough weekend.

The strategy is going to play a huge part. I hope tomorrow we can push together to stay ahead of the rest."

Meanwhile, Force India's struggle in the qualifying continued as they failed to cross the Q2 yet again.

Paul di Resta will start 12th on the grid, just ahead of teammate Adrian Sutil. Di Resta looked set to enter Q3 but Daniel Ricciardo's last lap dashed his hopes.

Now since Hulkenberg has qualified seventh, Sauber have a chance to reduce the Force India lead further.

Force India are 17 points ahead at the sixth place and need the big teams to fare better so that Sauber do not score much points.

First Published: Saturday, October 26, 2013 04:54 PM
Post Comment (+)