Vettel snatches pole position from Webber in Austin

By on Saturday, November 16, 2013
Red Bull/Getty Images

Red Bull/Getty Images

World champion Sebastian Vettel snatched pole position from team-mate Mark Webber during the final moments of qualifying for the United States Grand Prix.

Webber held provisional pole position and lowered his own benchmark and Vettel appeared to be heading for second position after a tardy first and second sector.

But Vettel lit up the timing screens in the final sector to steal pole from Webber.

Romain Grosjean set the third fastest time, ahead of Nico Hulkenberg and 2012 race winner Lewis Hamilton.

Fernando Alonso was sixth for Ferrari, ahead of Sergio Perez and Lotus's Heikki Kovalainen.

Valtteri Bottas made it through to Q3 for only the second time in 2013 and will start the race from ninth place. Esteban Gutierrez rounds out the top 10.

Daniel Ricciardo narrowly failed to make it through to Q3 and will start the race from 11th place.

Paul di Resta was 12th, ahead of Jenson Button. However, Button will drop to 16th place as a result of his three place grid penalty for a red flag infringement during practice.

Nico Rosberg will therefore start from 13th place, ahead of Felipe Massa, Jean-Eric Vergne and Button.

Adrian Sutil failed to make it through to Q2 and his woes were compounded when he had to abandon his Force India on circuit with a suspected puncture.

Pastor Maldonado had a troublesome Q1 as he twice encountered rivals on an outlap and managed only 18th.

Maldonado inferred that his team had sabotaged his car.

"You need to ask the team. It's quite clear. A question for them," he said when asked about his deficit to Bottas. "I think in my car, someone is playing with the tyre pressures."

At the back, Giedo van der Garde was 19th, ahead of Jules Bianchi, Charles Pic and Max Chilton. Pic will drop to 22nd as a result of a gearbox penalty.

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