Audi's Edoardo Mortara has claimed his first ever DTM pole position after producing a stunning lap ahead of championship leader Gary Paffett, who shares the front row at Spielberg.

Mortara, who was third to run in the Q4 shootout posted an error free lap of a 1 minute 26.171 seconds, propelling his Audi to a provisional pole in front of the Mercedes of Paffett.

It had looked set for a second Mattias Ekstrom pole of the season after the Swede not only set the pace during Q3 but also set a faster first sector than his Audi counterpart. However, an average middle sector cost the former double DTM champion not only a shot at pole but also second position.

Ekstrom will start tomorrow's race in front of defending champion Martin Tomczyk, who occupies the fourth grid slot following a mistake in turn 1 denying the German a crack at pole position.

Joey Hand, who only narrowly missed out on reaching Q4 enjoyed his strongest DTM qualifying to date and leads an all BMW third row ahead of Bruno Spengler.

Jamie Green represents Mercedes' second fastest machine around the Red Bull Ring, placing his HWA run car a solid if not spectacular seventh. Audi's Filipe Alberquerque will be disappointed to only find himself eighth after topping this morning's free practice.

Dirk Werner and Ralf Schumacher round off the top ten after both posting a solid performance in comparison to recent weeks.

Audi's Timo Scheider is fast becoming Q2's obligatory casualty. As a result the former double DTM champion never looked like troubling any potential Q3 runner and will start tomorrow's race from 16th position.

BMW's Andy Priaulx arrived at Austria with much hope following a disastrous home race at Brands Hatch. Unfortunately, the Brit once again looked to have struggled with a lack of a raw pace which translated into an 18th position starting slot.

Former F1 winner, David Coulthard, continued his disappointing qualifying run and props up the rear of the field in his Mucke-run Mercedes.

by Simon Evans