Championship leader Gary Paffett leads an all Mercedes front row after clinching his second DTM pole of the season in front of team-mate Jamie Green around the Norisring street circuit.

Paffett, who was the first car to set a time during the one-lap shootout, narrowly edged out his Green by less than half a tenth in yet another closely fought session.

Augusto Farfus, a German tin-top rookie, enjoyed his best qualifying to date in third position, also making him the highest placed BMW.

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Not for the first time this season, Mattias Ekstrom had looked set to claim pole position, but yet again the Swede failed to translate his raw pace into a single lap flyer. Instead, the former double champion starts tomorrow's race from fourth.

Last year's Norisring pole sitter Ralf Schumacher continued his strong form around the popular street circuit, qualifying his Mercedes in fifth position alongside defending champion Martin Tomczyk who lines up sixth in his RMG-run BMW.

Bruno Spengler follows his BMW team-mate in seventh position and shares the fourth row with the eighth placed Mercedes of Christian Vietoris.

Despite missing most of this morning's free practice, Andy Priaulx qualified his BMW into the top ten for the first time since Hockenheim, perhaps signalling an upturn in fortune for the Guernseyman, who will start the race from ninth.

Spielberg winner Edoardo Mortara, who was the second of only two Audi's to make it into the top ten, starts tenth.

Meanwhile, Mercedes' David Coulthard posted a much more respectable qualifying performance this time round, managing a 14th starting position slot, while ABT driver Timo Scheider once again endured a torrid qualifying session. This time the former double champion failed to make it out of Q1 and will start tomorrow's race on the final row of the grid alongside Audi team-mate Rahel Frey.

by Simon Evans