Dominik Baumann (AUT) and Maximilian Buhk (DEU) in the Heico Gravity-Charouz Mercedes SLS AMG No.101 will start both races in round five of the FIA GT3 European Championship from pole position after a dominant display in Qualifying at Moscow Raceway.
The drivers’ championship leaders picked up where they left off at the previous round in Portugal, where they took two pole positions, to set themselves up for a solid points’ haul in Race One and Race Two tomorrow afternoon.
Baumann set the fastest time of 1:34.533 in Q1 while Buhk produced a best lap of 1:33.914 in Q2. “I’m very happy, it was a quite good lap, we did miss a little bit of time before Qualifying which affected set-up but it turned out ok,” Baumann said.
“I really like this Moscow circuit, it’s a really nice track. It’s not the easiest one to get around but it’s fun and great for the race calendar.”
Hari Proczyk (AUT) in the Rhino’s Leipert Motorsport Lamborghini No.111 was second quickest in Q1 with a 1:34.596.
He and co-driver David Mengesdorf (DEU), will look to add to their breakthrough 2012 season win in Race Two from the Algarve.
“It was a good result today, it improves our chances in the championship having a good starting position for the race, but unfortunately I think the Mercedes will have to do badly in the next few races for us to win the championship,” Proczyk said.
“Today’s Qualifying was promising, the car felt really good and the circuit is also really nice. It has tight sections and a great straight, it can be tough but it’s fun.”
Italy’s Alessandro Pier Guidi and his Russian co-driver Aleksander Skryabin finished second in Q2 while the second Heico Gravity-Charouz Mercedes of Max Nilsson (SWE) and Mika Vahamaki (FIN) will start both races from third position.
“I’m pleased to be here and with the third place, we weren’t 100% consistent so I’m glad,” Vahamaki said.
“Tomorrow I’m definitely going to try and challenge my (Mercedes) team-mates because we want as many points as we can and this third position has definitely helped that.”
Conditions were overcast at Moscow Raceway with air temperature at a low 13C and brief sunny spells. Tomorrow is expected to be similar with a hint of rain.
Race One starts at 11:15 local time tomorrow while Race Two is at 15:15.
Source: FIA European GT3