Jarno Trulli's losing streak in qualifying is the first time he has been outpaced four times on the trot.
The Italian is a veteran of approaching 250 races and until very recently was hailed as arguably the best driver in Formula One over a single flying lap.
But in 2011 at Team Lotus, Heikki Kovalainen has outqualified him in every qualifying session so far -- a feat not even managed by Trulli's former Renault teammate Fernando Alonso.
Faced with the ignominious "first" by Finland's Turun Sanomat newspaper, the 36-year-old hit back: "But this is also the first time in my career I have had a succession of technical problems in qualifying."
Lotus confirmed that the moveable rear wing 'DRS' system on Trulli's T128 was not working properly on Saturday.
Another palpably disillusioned driver in Turkey is Timo Glock, who after suffering at the back with Virgin was desperately awaiting an expected 1.5 second per lap boost with this weekend's upgrade.
Every weekend we seem to start at the beginning
But the new parts, particularly the Red Bull-style exhaust, did not work and Glock ultimately ended up slower than his teammate Jerome d'Ambrosio who is still driving the old car.
"Every weekend we seem to start at the beginning," the German is quoted by Die Welt newspaper.
"I somehow have the feeling that we could save all the test driving and just have a coffee instead."