MOSCOW, September 21 (R-Sport) - Sebastian Vettel continued his blistering pace Saturday as he stormed to pole position for the Singapore Grand Prix, while his championship rival Fernando Alonso could manage only seventh place.
Vettel comes into the race with a 70-point lead over Alonso in the Formula One standings and winning the sport’s only night race Sunday would further bolster his lead with just six races remaining.
Vettel thought his pole lap of 1 minute 42.841 so dominant that he got out of the car with two minutes remaining in the top-10 shootout, but the reigning champion got a late scare when fellow German Nico Rosberg set a 1:49.932 for second in his Mercedes.
Third place went to Romain Grosjean of Lotus, who starts alongside Vettel’s Red Bull teammate Mark Webber in fourth. Lewis Hamilton could only manage fifth despite having a quick-looking Mercedes, and behind him are the twin Ferraris of Felipe Massa and Alonso.
McLaren’s Jenson Button, Vettel’s future teammate Daniel Ricciardo of Toro Rosso and Sauber’s Mexican rookie Esteban Gutierrez round out the top 10.
Among the strugglers was Kimi Raikkonen, who only managed 13th for Lotus after complaining of a back injury, while Sergio Perez disappointed in 14th for McLaren.
Pastor Maldonado also had a poor session - the Venezuelan was second on the grid in Singapore last year but was eliminated in the first session Saturday and will start 18th.
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