Augusto Farfus wins pole position in Brno - Three BMW drivers in front.
Brno, 20th June 2009. BMW Team Germany's Augusto Farfus (BR) will start round 11 of the FIA World Touring Car Championship from pole position. At the "Automotodrom Brno" the 25-year-old set the best time of 2:09.590 minutes in the decisive second qualifying phase. Just 0,040 seconds behind his fellow BMW driver, Andy Priaulx (GB) qualified second for BMW Team UK in Brno (CZ). Alessandro Zanardi (IT) from BMW Team Italy-Spain came third, so rounding off an excellent overall result for BMW.
The other two BMW national team drivers also managed to get into the top-ten shoot-out. BMW Team Germany's Jorg Muller (DE) will line up seventh on the grid for the first of Sunday's two sprint races at the 5.402-kilometre circuit. Zanardi's team-mate, Sergio Hernandez (ES), was ninth.
"It was really tricky to find the perfect set-up for this qualifying," said Farfus. "Following the wet practice sessions we then had to prepare for dry conditions. And then again it started raining in the dying moments of Q2. However, the team did a fabulous job, so we were able to really push hard from the word go. The fact three BMW cars from all three national teams locked out the top-3 shows once more Brno is a very good place for us. In theory I'm now in a promising position to grab the championship lead. But theory doesn't always turns into reality in our series. I will give my very best though to make it happen."
Farfus celebrated his third pole position of the season and the ninth of his WTCC career. It was the 16th time a BMW driver has taken pole on the grid for the first race of the weekend. In the first part of qualifying it had been Priaulx setting the pace. He finished first ahead of Muller, posting a time of 2:09.644 minutes. In "Q2", too, the triple world champion took the lead, before Farfus set his pole time shortly before the end of the 10-minute session.
"I'm far from being disappointed," commented Priaulx. "The speed is in my car, and it's great that we have three BMW drivers in front. My goal was to score as many points as possible here in Brno. I'm now in a good position to do just that. My second set of tyres in Q1 was just fantastic, I narrowly missed out on pole in the second session. Most of the remaining tracks on the calendar will favour our rivals, so we have to make the most of our opportunities here. That's what we have done today."
Although Zanardi took pole position last year, he wasn't unhappy at all with P3, saying: "We were really yearning for this race weekend to begin, as our team is usually strong in Brno. Having Augusto and Andy in front of me, surely is no disgrace. Now I'm looking for my maiden podium finish of the year."
The 11th race of the FIA World Touring Car Championship will start at 12:50hrs local time (11:50hrs BST) on Sunday, race two will get underway at 15:05hrs (14:05hrs BST).