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Vettel masters Istanbul Park to take pole

Sebastian Vettel today dominated qualifying for tomorrow’s Turkish Grand Prix at Istanbul Park.

The Red Bull man was almost half a second quicker than his nearest challenger, team mate Mark Webber, in a performance that has a sense of deja vu – being his fourth pole of the 2011 season so far. His big crash in Friday practice obviously had no effect and he will start as strong favourite for the win tomorrow.

Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg reinforced the Anglo-German marque’s renaissance with the third fastest time, while McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton starts fourth.

Fernando Alonso clocked fifth fastest with Hamilton’s team mate Jenson Button could only manage sixth on the grid, despite having impressed in practice yesterday.

Vitaly Petrov showed that Renault are capable of some speed at this track with seventh place on the grid, while a disappointed Michael Schumacher saw himself end eighth. Nick Heidfeld was also impressive with ninth, and Felipe Massa rounded out the top ten.

Williams will be cheered by Rubens Barrichello’s 11th and Pastor Maldonado’s 14th place starts, and for the first time this season Adrian Sutil outqualified Paul di Resta for the Force Indias to slot in 12th and 13th. Sergio Perez will start 15th for Sauber but his team mate Kamui Kobayashi had engine difficulties and will be in 23rd slot tomorrow.

The two Toro Rossos, Buemi and Alguersuari, are in 16th and 17th, while the two Lotuses follow them in the respective order of Kovalainen and Trulli. Tonio Liuzzi was promoted to 20th place following a penalty for Virgin’s Jerome d’Ambrosio for ignoring warning flags in practice, and accordingly the Belgian will be last on the grid. His team mate Timo Glock did not do much better with 21st place on the grid. Meanwhile, Narain Karthikeyan will be in the thick of the battle of the backmarkers, starting 22nd.

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