DTM

Adria: Qualifying report

Marcel Fässler ahead of Schneider, Ekström at the Adria After an action-packed Super-Pole-session, Swiss driver Marcel Fässler put his Mercedes-Benz CLK-DTM on pole position for tomorrow's second season round of the DTM at the Adria ...

Marcel Fässler ahead of Schneider, Ekström at the Adria

After an action-packed Super-Pole-session, Swiss driver Marcel Fässler put his Mercedes-Benz CLK-DTM on pole position for tomorrow's second season round of the DTM at the Adria International Raceway in Italy.

Fellow-Mercedes-driver Bernd Schneider qualified in second place, Swede Mattias Ekström was third fastest with his Abt-Audi TT-R. Once again, Scotsman Peter Dumbreck was the best-placed of three Opel-drivers in the top ten, he put his Astra V8 Coupé in fifth place on the grid.

Marcel Fässler was very satisfied with his performance, which brought him the third DTM-pole of his career. "It was quite hard, because the temperatures in the car are very high. But the set-up was good and I managed a near-perfect lap. I was confident after timed practice already and then converted it into a good result in the Super-Pole."

Bernd Schneider was 0.006 seconds down on his Swiss colleague and commented: "I just wasn't fast enough, I will have to think of something before tomorrow. No, seriously, Marcel did a perfect lap, a big hand to him."

Jean Alesi couldn't start in the Super-Pole-session because of a gearbox problem. "That was too bad for him," said Mercedes-Benz motorsport director Norbert Haug. "For the rest, I am very happy with the performance of our drivers, with four cars in the top ten and our locking out of the first grid row. Once again, it was a highly entertaining and close session, with eight cars within 0.6 seconds."

Mattias Ekström was satisfied with his third position. "It shows that our car can match the pace of the others, but it will be quite hard on a race distance tomorrow, especially at such high temperatures like here." Reigning champion Laurent Aiello didn't make it into the top ten.

Abt Sportsline's team principal Hans-Jürgen Abt explained: "Laurent had a bit of a problem getting his speed on the track. Then again, when you take into account how close everything is, you know that the slightest mistake can put you out of the top ten. With Ekström, Martin Tomczyk and Karl Wendlinger, we had three of our drivers in the Super-Pole-session, so we can live with that."

Opel also had three cars among the first ten, with Peter Dumbreck as best-placed Opel-driver in fifth place and Alain Menu and Joachim Winkelhock both on the fourth grid row, in seventh and eighth place respectively.

"The handling of the car was fine, I was happy with my lap but for a few slight mistakes," Dumbreck commented. Opel motorsport director Volker Strycek said: "We were able to show a good performance, with three cars in the top ten, one each from all of our three teams. I am really looking forward to an exciting race tomorrow."

-dtm-

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Series DTM
Drivers Jean Alesi , Karl Wendlinger , Laurent Aiello , Marcel Fassler , Peter Dumbreck , Martin Tomczyk , Bernd Schneider , Norbert Haug , Mattias Ekström , Volker Strycek , Hans-Jurgen Abt , Alain Menu