Adam Carroll is determined to increase Ireland's advantage in the latest round of A1GP after claiming a pair of pole positions in Taupo.
Having chosen to spend the practice sessions developing the car's set-up, Carroll moved to the top of the timesheets when qualifying got underway, his best laps putting him comfortably ahead of Netherlands in both sessions.
A fourth pole position of the season for Carroll and the Ireland team, the former GP2 race winner was pleased to put in a pair of quick laps around a circuit renowned for prompting errors.
“I got four good clean laps in and we were quick. It was a good run in each segment. I put the new tyres on but didn't really know what the grip level would be so I simply pushed hard and hoped to be at the front. I put in a nice tidy lap in at the end. It is a tricky circuit to put in a nice quick lap with no mistakes, but today it all flowed well and the pole positions came to us. It's a very satisfying feeling.”
"The circuit here just doesn't have much grip so when you try hard you can have a spin or run wide, so it is important to be careful. That is what practice is for, because that is when you can push hard just to find where everything is. When it comes to the new tyres you just have to be smooth – push one hundred per cent put the lap together as we did today. It's great for the team; they have done a superb job to give me the car for this."
Still, with Ireland's closest championship rivals, Portugal, starting just behind in third for both races, team principal Mark Gallagher is now shifting his focus to the races.
"We dominated today, but races are not won on a Saturday so the focus of the team and driver will be on the critical phases of tomorrow's races - the starts and the mandatory pit stops. An ideal qualifying performance."
"It is a measure of the team's development, engineering strength and Adam Carroll's sheer ability that we can celebrate our first double pole position for Sunday's sprint and feature races. Adam likes this track but it is interesting how we now take practice very steadily, understanding the car and relying on the driver and engineers to know what we need for qualifying and then deliver it.”