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Monaco takes first pole at Kyalami.

The Netherlands and Monaco will share the two pole position starts when the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport stages its first races on the former grand grand prix track at Kyalami after their diverse tactics paid off in qualifying.

The Dutch were one of the few teams to risk using their PowerBoost option in qualifying for Sunday's sprint event, with Jeroen Bleekemolen ending up more than half a second ahead of the field over the first two timed sessions.

Expecting to wind up a lot further down the field for the feature race, however, Bleekemolen - one of only two drivers with Kyalami experience prior to the weekend - was happy to 'escape' with ninth spot after an accident brought out the red flag with minutes to go, denying several rivals a shot at displacing him.

At the head of the pack, however, was Monaco, after Clivio Piccione benefited from combining his PowerBoost lap with a clear track midway through the final 15-minute session. The former GP2 racewinner will share the front row with Malaysia, after Fairuz Fauzy made the most of a new engine in his Ferrari machine, with New Zealand and Australia lining up behind them after Earl Bamber's final boost-assisted lap proved sufficient to dislodge long-time pacesetter Australia from third.

The Dutch will share the front of the sprint grid with Portugal after Felipe Albuquerque used a conventional lap to bump Switzerland onto row two, where Neel Jani will line-up alongside Piccione. Narain Karthikeyan also used the PowerBoost to claim fifth for race one, but there was disappointment for Germany and, in particular, Lebanon, who both failed to take advantage of the extra 60bhp - Daniel Morad having his car go sick towards the end of his best lap.

Current points leader Ireland will start sixth for both races, with Portugal seventh in the feature, after several teams were denied a final shot at bettering their position when Felipe Guimares went off heavily in the Brazilian car, removing its rear wing after collecting the tyre wall at the esses. Ironically, the silver machine will line up alongside Albuquerque in the feature.

Local favourites South Africa are best placed in the sprint, where it starts eighth, after being stranded down in 16th in feature race qualifying.

More to follow...


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Clivio Piccione - A1 Team Monaco [Pic credit: A1GP]
A1 Team Netherlands star Jeroen Bleekemolen at the annual Rizla Racing Day
A1 Team Netherlands star Jeroen Bleekemolen in action at the annual Rizla Racing Day
A1GP grid girls add a touch of glamour at Zandvoort in the Netherlands [pic credit: A1GP Media]
A1GP grid girls add a touch of glamour at Zandvoort in the Netherlands [pic credit: A1GP Media]
Jeroen Bleekemolen - A1 Team Netherlands [Pic credit: A1GP]
Robert Doornbos in action in the Algarve [Pic credit: A1GP]
Robert Doornbos on track in Portugal [Pic credit: A1GP]
Robert Doornbos takes pole in the Algarve [Pic credit: A1GP]
Robert Doornbos during practice in the Algarve [Pic credit: A1GP]
Babe at the South African round of the A1GP season at Kyalami [Pic credit: A1GP Media]
Babes at the South African round of the A1GP season at Kyalami [Pic credit: A1GP Media]
Babe at the South African round of the A1GP season at Kyalami [Pic credit: A1GP Media]
Babe at the South African round of the A1GP season at Kyalami [Pic credit: A1GP Media]
Babe at the South African round of the A1GP season at Kyalami [Pic credit: A1GP Media]
Babe at the South African round of the A1GP season at Kyalami [Pic credit: A1GP Media]
Babe at the South African round of the A1GP season at Kyalami [Pic credit: A1GP Media]
Babe at the South African round of the A1GP season at Kyalami [Pic credit: A1GP Media]

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