Hamilton claims US Grand Prix pole, Vettel No. 2

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, of Britain, drives his car during the second practice session for the Formula One U.S. Grand Prix auto race at the Circuit of the Americas, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Lewis Hamilton stormed through qualifying Saturday to grab pole position for the U.S. Grand Prix, with title rival Sebastian Vettel getting a big push on his final lap to grab second.

That sets up a Sunday duel as Hamilton chases a possible fourth career season championship. The Mercedes driver holds a 59-point lead over Vettel with four races to go and Vettel will be desperate to push for the win.

Hamilton has dominated the Circuit of the Americas, setting track records Friday and Saturday. He will be chasing his fourth consecutive win here and fifth overall since 2012.

Vettel had to out get on the front row in order to chase Hamilton into the critical first turn on Sunday. If he started the second row or lower, he risked getting blocked out and getting left behind. 

By JIM VERTUNO, AP Sports Writer