UDPATE: The third grid position earned by Red Bull Racing’s Sebastian Vettel after qualifying today will not be included due to his car not containing enough remaining fuel to return to parc ferme and provide the 1.0-liter mandatory sample to the FIA. Vettel immediately stopped after qualifying today, but never made it back to the pits. He will be allowed to race tomorrow, but must start from the back of the grid.

Lewis Hamilton’s strong pace throughout practice and today’s qualifying session has led to the McLaren driver scoring pole position at the 2012 Formula One Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The young Briton was on another level compared to the other drivers, with his fastest lap coming in at 1:40.630.

The next fastest around the Yas Marina Circuit was Red Bull Racing’s Mark Webber, who posted a fastest lap of 1:40.978.

After showing some early promise, Red Bull’s other driver, Sebastian Vettel, slowed late in the day and could only manage a best time of 1:41.073. Starting next to him on the grid in tomorrow’s race will be Williams’ Pastor Maldonado, who managed a best time of 1:41.226.

Taking out the fifth and sixth spots on the grid are Lotus’ Kimi Räikkönen and McLaren’s Jenson Button, respectively.

Unfortunately for Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, who has the best chance of stealing the world championship crown from Vettel, he will have to start at seventh on the grid. It should be noted, however, that only one of the three Abu Dhabi Grands Prix held so far has been won from pole, so we could still be in for a surprise or two tomorrow.

Rounding out the top 10 are Mercedes-AMG’s Nico Rosberg, Ferrari’s Felipe Massa and Lotus’ Romain Grosjean.

Going into tomorrow’s race, Sebastian Vettel leads the Drivers’ Championship with 240 points, followed closely by Fernando Alonso on 227 points and Kimi Räikkönen a distant third with 173 points.

In the Constructors’ Championship, Red Bull Racing remains the clear leader with a massive 407 points, followed by Ferrari with 316 points and McLaren not far behind with 310 points.