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Hamilton Starts on Pole at Season-Opening Australian Grand Prix

March 17, 2012

McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton. Photographer: Clive Mason/Getty Images

McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton. Photographer: Clive Mason/Getty Images

Lewis Hamilton will start from pole position in today’s season-opening Australian Grand Prix, as McLaren claimed the top two places in qualifying.

Hamilton posted a time of 1 minute, 24.922 seconds yesterday at Melbourne’s Albert Park to finish 0.15 seconds ahead of teammate Jenson Button. It was the 20th career pole for the 2008 Formula 1 champion and marks the first all-McLaren first row since that season's Hungarian Grand Prix.

Two-time defending series champion Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull qualified sixth and will start next to teammate Mark Webber on the third row. Lotus’s Romain Grosjean qualified third ahead of Mercedes’s Michael Schumacher.

Nico Rosberg of Mercedes, Pastor Maldonado of Williams, Nico Hulkenberg of Force India and STR’s Daniel Ricciardo round out the top 10 qualifiers.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Bob Bensch at

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