Brazilian Grand Prix, Qualifying: Lewis Hamilton snatches pole, Sebastian Vettel on fourth
Lewis Hamilton grabbed pole position for Sunday's championship showdown Brazilian Grand Prix on Saturday as he and his McLaren team upstaged the title fighters and locked out the front row for the fourth time this year. (AFP Text)
Lewis Hamilton grabbed pole position for Sunday's championship showdown Brazilian Grand Prix on Saturday as he and his McLaren team upstaged the title fighters and locked out the front row for the fourth time this year. (AP and AFP Photos and Text from AFP)
The dazzling performance from the two McLaren men left championship contenders, defending champion Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull down in fourth and his title rival, two-time champion Fernando Alonso of Ferrari, in eighth.
Felipe Massa bettered his teammate once again, coming in fifth while Alonso was eighth. Alonso, though, had a favour coming his way once again and this time not from his team but Pastor Maldonado, whose penalty gave the Ferrari no.1 one place jump on the starting grid.
Force India had a good final qualifying of the season. Nico Hulkenberg and Paul di Resta came in 7th and 11th but thanks to Maldonando will start one place above their qualifying places.
Alonso was later promoted to seventh on the grid when Williams driver Pastor Maldonado was penalised 10 places. Vettel, who has a 13-point lead over the Spaniard going into the final race of the season, can become the sport's youngest triple champion on Sunday.
"I am grateful to be able to put the car on the front row and to have a one-two for McLaren in my last qualifying is just great. The team did a fantastic job," said Hamilton.
Seven-time champion Michael Schumacher, heading into retirement after his final race on Sunday, qualified in 14th place, but hinted that he too may also have run in a 'wet' set up.