Quali


Photo: Reuters

“I’m a Seoul man.” Parade of hits and poles continue for the happening man of Formula 1 of the moment, the man from Heppenheim, Sebastian Vettel.

After his Tokyo thunder, taking pole and victory in the Japanese Grand Prix, the young German took his ninth pole position of the season, and 14th of his career, in qualifying for the inaugural Korean Grand Prix.

Victory in Sunday’s race will put him in a strong position to displace Lewis Hamilton as the youngest world champion. Sharing the front row with Vettel is the championship leader and Red Bull teammate Mark Webber.

The mate from Melbourne had the momentum earlier in the season, and with only a pair of Grands Prix remaining after the Korean event Webber can ill afford to make a mistake and must finish ahead of Vettel in one of the races to take the title.

Given the pace and reliability of Red Bull cars it will not come as a surprise if the remaining races are won by one of their drivers. Math for Vettel is simple; pedal to the metal. Win all three races and become only the second German and the youngest driver to become “welt meister.”

Fernando Alonso starts on the second row and equal on points with Vettel in second place. The Spaniard may not get his third championship this season but could likely play a pivotal part in the outcome of it.

The same can be said of the man sharing the second row with him, a familiar face from a few seasons back. Lewis Hamilton. The McLaren Ace, like Alonso, is still in the hunt and when it comes to aggressive driving the Stevenage sensation surpasses them all.

Then there is the weather. Rain may bring more havoc for the drivers who are already complaining of dust on the track and concerns have also been raised on the entrance to the pit lane

In 2008, Vettel rained on Hamilton’s parade in the final race of the season in Sao Paulo, only a pass on the final corner of the final lap allowed Hamilton to become world champion.

We are in for a great race and championship battle in the remaining Grands Prix. Will history repeat itself? Championship goes down to the final lap of the season finale.

The winner enjoys the Arabian night, the rest drown their sorrows in Yas Marina.

— Nasir Hameed

Racing regards from “Love Hotel.” We’ll leave the light on.