Valencia Street Circuit
Pic heads Addax 1-2 in qualifying
Spaniards close out front row at home race
Charles Pic pipped teammate Giedo van der Garde for pole position in tomorrow's feature race in Valencia, claiming the top spot in the final minute of this afternoon's qualifying session to complete the front row for Addax at their home circuit just before Romain Grosjean found the wall from P3 and brought the session to an end.
Pic crossed the line just seconds before his countryman's accident with a time of 1:46.675, stealing pole from his teammate by just 0.052. Grosjean's best lap was also within a tenth of the top spot in a session where the action was just as hot as the scorching temperature.
A black cat ran across the circuit just as the lights went green to release the field, but if anyone was worried that it was an ill omen they were soon proved wrong: Jules Bianchi, Sam Bird, Grosjean, Pic and Esteban Gutierrez claimed and re-claimed the top spot as they all looked for an advantage on the tight and twisty circuit.
But it was van der Garde who looked to have a lock on the session with a scintillating lap just before halfway, with his rivals forced to concede and return for a new set of tyres and a chance to find some improvement. Most of the field were back out a few minutes later as Johnny Cecotto spun and stopped at turn 2, bringing out the red flags and annoying those who were on their hot laps.
With only a few minutes remaining once the session went live, the drivers was soon tripping over each other in pursuit of a clean lap: a number of them found the pace for a fast sector, but it looked as though no one was going to be able to string them together until Pic stunned the pitlane with a super lap with 2 minutes remaining.
Grosjean was in P3 and hoping for more, but he pushed just too hard: the Frenchman ran over the kerbs and slid into the wall, prompting the red flags as the clock ran down to zero. He will start alongside Luca Filippi tomorrow, with Gutierrez, Bird, Dani Clos and Davide Valsecchi just behind them. And with 13 drivers within a second of pole, and 25 within 2 seconds, the action promises to be even more torrid in the race tomorrow afternoon.
by: gp2 series