English Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton grabbed pole position for Sunday's Malaysian Grand Prix, the second race of the 2014 Formula One season, while Spain's Fernando Alonso, who drives for Ferrari, will start fourth.

Hamilton posted a fastest lap of 1:59.431 in the final round of Saturday's qualifying at the Sepang International Circuit, beating out four-time defending F1 champion Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull), who will join him on the first row.

The Englishman secured his second pole of the new season and the 33rd of his Formula One career, tying the British record set by Jim Clark.

Alonso will be accompanied on the second row by Germany's Nico Rosberg, who leads the Drivers' standings after winning this month's Australian Grand Prix.

Rosberg's countryman, Vettel, will be looking to jumpstart his season in Malaysia after retiring from the March 16 race in Melbourne due to a failed power unit.

Mexican Sauber driver Esteban Gutierrez and his countryman, Sergio Perez, who drives for Force India, will start 12th and 14th, respectively, after failing to qualify for Q3. EFE