EURO STC QUALIFYING - weather: sunny, track: dry, temperature 22°C.
KOX STEALS POLE TO DE LORENZI WHILE BMW DRIVERS ARE IN DEEP TROUBLE
Peter Kox claimed his 6th pole on 8 tries, in the Euro STC qualifying at Brno, Czech Republic. But this time it was more difficult then ever for the Dutchman, because Alfa Romeo young lion, Gianluca De Lorenzi set a very fast lap with just 7 minutes to go in the session.
"I made my attempt when the time was expiring and it was not a clear lap - said Kox - because I made a couple of mistakes. I was sure my time was not enough for the pole". But it was.
"He was bloody quick - De Lorenzi declared - and went under the 1:07 barrier that we definitely cant' break. My pole position dream has not lasted very long, but I'm happy anyway, because I know I did my best. It's the first time for me to start from the front row of the grid in this series and I hope I will benefit the situation".
De Lorenzi's teammates, point leader Fabrizio Giovanardi and Nicola Larini, will fill the second row; their times were really close to De Lorenzi's.
"We have worked a lot on our cars after free practice and performances improved, but it looks like this is not the best track for Alfa. Kox's Honda is really impressive; apparently it's competitive on each kind of track without needing a lot of adjustments. We'll see tomorrow in the race", Giovanardi declared.
Roberto Colciago set the 5th time and he too complained about the track's characteristics.
Much more disappointed were BMW drivers, Gianni Morbidelli and Emanuele Naspetti, 6th and 7th in the time list respectively.
Morbidelli aborted his last lap on a spin and didn't restart because of a flat battery.
"But the limit of my car was much higher than the pole sitter's pace - he said - and we now have a lot to do before the race. It's not unusual for us, it was like that the whole season, but here the gap is so wide that it really worries me".
As to his teammate Naspetti, he complained about engine problems since the morning.
"Apparently there was a defective valve and eventually we decided to change the complete engine" he revealed. Thus will force him to start from the back of the grid.
<pre> QUALIFYING RESULTS
1. Peter Kox (NL) JAS Engineering Honda Accord 2:06.812 153.38 kmh
2. Gianluca De Lorenzi (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 2:07.131 + 0.319
3. Fabrizio Giovanardi (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 2:07.238 + 0.426
4. Nicola Larini (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 2:07.287 + 0.475
5. Roberto Colciago (I) AGS Motorsport Audi A4 Quattro 2:07.949 + 1.137
6. Gianni Morbidelli CiBiEmme Engineering BMW 320i E36 2:09.946 + 3.134
7. Stefano Gabellini (I) Christy's Team BMW 320i E36 2:10.340 + 4.006
8. Andrej Studenic (SK) National Team Slovakia Audi A4 Quattro 2:10.879 + 4.067
9. Gianluca Roda (I) Greyhound Motorsport Opel Vectra 16V 2:11.124 + 4.312
10. Massimo Pigoli (I) Christy's Team BMW 320i E36 2:11.153 + 4.341
11. Heinrich Symanzick (D) Raceline Racing Team Opel Vectra 16V 2:11.529 + 4.717
12. Moreno Soli (I) Soli Racing Team Alfa Romeo 156 2:12.177 + 5.365
13. Romana Bernardoni (I) Nordauto Engineering Alfa Romeo 156 2:13.256 + 7.074
14. Emanuele Naspetti (I) CiBiEmme Engineering BMW 320i E36 no time *
* Naspetti: times disallowed for engine change