Karun Chandhok, the 24-year old from Chennai, secured his first-ever front row position as he qualified second for the GP2 Asia series race to be run here on Sunday.
Clocking one minute, 44.965 seconds, Karun, driving for Team iSport International, was the second quickest behind pole setter Frenchman Romain Grosjean (ART Grand Prix) who came in with a 1:44.182.
However, the second Indian in the fray, 18-year old Armaan Ebrahim, also from Chennai, qualified 26th and last, over three seconds off the pace in his David Price Racing team car.
Karun started his flying lap with just 15 seconds of the 30-minute qualifying session left. He had a fairly clean run up until the third second when he encountered some traffic and lost precious fractions.
"I was stuck in traffic throughout the session and with 15 seconds left, I was on P4 when my team came on the radio asking me to have a crack. I had a fairly good run then until I came across Luca Filippi (Qi-Meritus) in the third sector. I lost a bit of time getting past him," Karun recalled.
Karun had started the second race in the season-opener at Dubai last month, but that was due to the grid being reversed after the first run when he finished seventh.
"To qualify second on a Grand Prix weekend is just amazing for me. I feel quite positive going into the race tomorrow.
"This morning, we had done the practice session on race set up with 45 kg of fuel. I was fifth quickest then, but in the qualifying, it was a different story," he said, after the qualifying session.