Tarquini on pole after unpredictable session

Title contender Gabriele Tarquini took a well-timed third pole position of the season at the Oschersleben after defying bad weather conditions to emerge on top of an unusual looking World Touring Car grid.

Having been a factor during free practice, the re-emergence of rain just as the first phase of qualifying got underway prompted a mad dash to complete quick initial laps, with drivers realising there would be no chance to improve later on.

It meant those emerging with the ten best times from their first attempts would go on to battle it out for pole position in the ensuing shootout.

Unsurprisingly, there were casualties, most notably championship leader Yvan Muller, who was forced to settle for a lowly 17th on the grid, while Andy Priaulx in 15th, Alain Menu in 19th and Jordi Gene in 22nd signalled further disappointments.

On the flip side, there were some surprising faces battling it out for the top ten positions, including Independent Trophy driver Marin Colak and Lada's Jaap Van Lagen, the Dutchman destined to score the Russian manufacturer's best grid slot of the season.

As it happens, a drying circuit provided further excitement as the quickest laps were set in the closing stages, with Tarquini emerging on top with a time almost two seconds faster than his nearest competitor,

That competition came from Colak, the Croatian putting in an outstanding performance to secure a spot on the front row of the grid driving his Team Ingra SEAT Leon.

Almost as impressive was Van Lagen, who went on to place his Priora – the first time he has driven the car this year – fourth on the grid alongside the second SEAT Sport Leon of Rickard Rydell.

It was enough for him to out-qualify Chevrolet pair Nicola Larini and Rob Huff, while Jorg Muller, Augusto Farfus and Alex Zanardi completed the top ten.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Gabriele Tarquini - SEAT Leon TDi [Pic credit: FIA WTCC]
Rickard Rydell signs with NIKA Racing [pic credit: NIKA Racing]
James Thompson - LADA Granta TC1 [pic credit: FIA WTCC]
John Filippi - Campos SEAT Leon [pic credit: FIA WTCC]
James Thompson - LADA Granta TC1 [pic credit: FIA WTCC]
Gabriele Tarquini - Honda Racing Civic [credit: FIA WTCC]
Rob Huff - LADA Granta TC1 [pic credit: FIA WTCC]
Gabriele Tarquini - Castrol Honda Racing
LADA unveils the 2014 specification Granta TC1
LADA unveils the 2014 specification Granta TC1
Honda reveals its 2014 specification WTCC Civic [pic credit: Castrol Honda]
Honda reveals its 2014 specification WTCC Civic [pic credit: Castrol Honda]
Tom Boardman - Special Tuning SEAT Leon [Pic credit
Rob Huff with Victor Shapovalov [Pic credit: LADA]
Rickard Rydell [Pic credit: FIA WTCC]
Tom Boardman - Special Tuning SEAT Leon [Pic credit: FIA WTCC]
Castrol Honda World Touring Car Team`s Gabriele Tarquini Sunday, September 22 2013. (Photo Copyright: Honda Europe / Naoki Kobayashi)
Gabriele Tarquini (Photo Credit: 2013 Honda Europe / David Noels)

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.