Pole Position for Jamie Green
Bruno Spengler fifth, Bernd Schneider seventh
Jamie Green (Salzgitter AMG-Mercedes C-Class) will start the seventh round of the 2006 DTM at Zandvoort on Sunday from pole position. It is his fourth pole of the year and the sixth of his career. Following Bruno Spengler's pole at the Nürburgring two weeks ago, it is the fifth pole for Mercedes-Benz in the seventh race of the year. Green set a time of 1:32.189 and was 75 thousandths of a second ahead of Tom Kristensen (Audi A4 DTM) in second place. With the exception of Nürburgring, Green started from the first row on the grid in every race 2006.
Bruno Spengler (DaimlerChrysler Bank AMG-Mercedes C-Class) was the second fastest Mercedes-Benz driver. The winner of the last two races at the Norisring and the Nürburgring was fifth with a 1:32.760. Overall leader Bernd Schneider (Vodafone AMG-Mercedes C-Class) was seventh with a 1:32.852. Green and Mattias Ekström (Audi A4 DTM) in fourth place were within 0.113sec and between Spengler in fifth and Pierre Kaffer (Audi A4 DTM) in eighth place the gap was 0.097sec. Mika Häkkinen was tenth in the second part of qualifying with a 1:33.254; the Finn missed the final by three hundredths of a second.
Green was the fastest Mercedes-Benz driver in the first part of qualifying with a 1:33.072 in second place. Daniel la Rosa (TrekStor AMG-Mercedes C-Class) missed the second round by 12 thousandths of a second and ended up 15th with a 1:34.061. Jean Alesi (stern AMG-Mercedes C-Class) suffered from shock absorber failure at the left front and qualified 17th (1:34.361) whilst Susie Stoddart (AutoScout24 AMG-Mercedes C-Class) was 20th with a 1:35.256. Stefan Mücke (TV-Spielfilm AMG-Mercedes C-Class) had a coming together with Alexandros Margaritis; due to the damage at the right front of his car Mücke was not able to participate in the second part of qualifying; he will start from 14th place (1:33.934).
In the second part, Green was fastest with a 1:32.038 -- the fastest lap of the day. Margaritis ended up ninth and missed the final round by eight thousandths of a second. For the first time, Mathias Lauda (Second Hand AMG Mercedes C-Class) qualified for the second part of qualifying; he will start 13th with a 1:33.928 and he was the best driver with a 2004 car.
Jamie Green: "I did a couple of fast laps today and the last one wasn't the quickest by one and a half tenths; however, it was good enough for pole position. Overtaking on this track is tricky; therefore, I have now the best basis for the race. My plan is a good start and a consistent speed in hopefully good weather. I thank my team for a perfect car."
Bruno Spengler: "I'm not quite happy, because I had hoped for more than fifth place. I pushed as hard as I could, but it was not possible to go faster. However, I'm still confident for the race, because the car is perfect and my long runs during free practice were promising."
Bernd Schneider: "I am disappointed. The car ran well, and I did not make a mistake, but I could not go faster. It will be a tough race tomorrow, but I will fight to maintain my advantage in the overall ranking."
Alexandros Margaritis: "Ninth position on the grid is not a bad basis, but when you miss the top-eight by only eight thousandths of a second, it is a bit frustrating. I am sorry for the incident with Stefan Mücke. I did not see him, there were no blue flags and my team did not warn me over the radio."
Mika Häkkinen: "A great result for Jamie and Mercedes-Benz. My qualifying was a bit disappointing as I was not able to make best use of my last set of tyres; otherwise, I would have been in the top eight. It will be tough tomorrow starting from 10th, but I will battle to the end."
Mathias Lauda: "I am happy to qualify for the second round of qualifying for the first time. I did not expect this after the free practice result, but our team did a great job to improve the car until the start of qualifying; hopefully, 13 will be my lucky number here."
Stefan Mücke: "The coming-together with Alexandros was quite annoying, because I was on a fast lap. I thought that he had seen me, but then he came into my way. Now I have a difficult situation for the race, because it is really difficult to overtake in Zandvoort."
Daniel la Rosa: "With my first set of tyres I had some problems with the balance. When I was out with my second set, the track was dirty after Nicolas Kiesa's off. Therefore I was not able to improve."
Jean Alesi: "Unfortunately, the left front shock absorber failed and therefore I had no chance to drive faster."
Susie Stoddart: "I am very disappointed. During both of my runs there were a lot of cars on the track, and I could not go any faster"
Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: "Congratulations to Jamie Green -- today he proved once again that he is this year's 'pole man'. In the second part of qualifying, he posted the fastest lap of the day with a 1:32.038; I did not think this time would be possible. Starting fifth and seventh respectively, it will be difficult for Bruno Spengler and Bernd Schneider to break through the strong Audi phalanx tomorrow -- difficult, but not impossible. Mika missed the top-eight by 30 thousandths of a second; but with a good start he will be able to move up. With eight thousandths, the gap for Alexandros Margaritis was even smaller. Mathias Lauda did a good job with the 2004 C-Class; he left all other three 2004 cars and four 2005 cars behind him."
Salzgitter AMG-Mercedes C-Class
Pole position, 1:32.189
DaimlerChrysler Bank AMG-Mercedes C-Class
Vodafone AMG-Mercedes C-Class Seventh, 1:32.852
Easy Rent AMG-Mercedes C-Class
TV-Spielfilm AMG-Mercedes C-Class
Daniel la Rosa
TrekStor AMG-Mercedes C-Class
stern AMG-Mercedes C-Class
AutoScout24 AMG-Mercedes C-Class