FIA WTCC – First Pole Of The Season For Muller

June 19, 2011


Yvan Muller claimed his first pole position of the season, and the first since Brands Hatch last year, beating his team-mate and current championship leader Rob Huff by more than three tenths of the second.
After having been the fastest driver in both today’s free practice sessions, Muller made three out of three in Q2 and gave the Chevrolet RML team their fifth pole position in five events.
Tom Coronel emerged as the fastest of the others, posting the third fastest lap – his best result so far with the ROAL Motorsport BMW.
On their first qualifying with the 1.6-litre turbo engines, Robert Dahlgren and Gabriele Tarquini both managed to make it to Q2 and were eventually classified in sixth and eighth positions respectively.

Q1 – Robert Dahlgren posted the fastest lap of 2:10.264 with five minutes to go, demoting Yvan Muller to a provisional second position that eventually became third when Rob Huff improved to 2:10.375 on his last attempt, beating him by nine thousandths of a second.
The fight to secure a place for Q2 became frantic in the last stages. With six minutes left on the clock, Michel Nykjær posted a provisional ninth fastest lap kicking Javier Villa down to 11th. Three minutes later the Spaniard replied, climbing back to eighth and demoting Kristian Poulsen to 11th.
With two minutes to go, Poulsen and Norbert Michelisz secured fourth and sixth positions respectively, cutting Tom Coronel and Nykjær out.
Coronel was the last driver capable to get back among the top-ten, pushing Villa out for good.
The following drivers qualified for Q2: Dahlgren, Huff, Muller, Poulsen, Menu, Michelisz, Tarquini, Coronel and Engstler, who won pole position for tomorrow’s Race 2.
Again Tiago Monteiro and Fredy Barth were unable to clock decent lap times because of engine problems.

Q2 – On his first lap Yvan Muller stopped the watches on the time of 2:08.884, establishing a new track record for S2000 cars and claiming pole position for good.
Although the Frenchman went for a second consecutive lap – missing the opportunity to pit for new tyres – nobody was able to threaten his leadership. Also on their first attempt, Rob Huff and Tom Coronel posted the second and third fastest laps (2:09.256 and 2:09.717) respectively.
In vain Alain Menu tried to make the top three; he aborted his first attempt and pitted for fresh tyres, but as the session was expiring he could not go faster than 2:09.830 that was worth the fourth position.
Norbert Michelisz qualified fifth and best of the Yokohama Trophy with a lap of 2:09.921.

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