BMW locks out front row in Japan -- Priaulx on pole position. Okayama, 30th October 2010. Thanks to a strong performance in qualifying for round 19 of the season, BMW Team RBM celebrated an excellent start to the decisive phase in the 2010 World...
BMW locks out front row in Japan -- Priaulx on pole position.
Okayama, 30th October 2010. Thanks to a strong performance in qualifying for round 19 of the season, BMW Team RBM celebrated an excellent start to the decisive phase in the 2010 World Touring Car Championship. In Okayama (JP) Andy Priaulx (GB) claimed pole position, after setting a lap time of 1:36.972 minutes in the second qualifying phase. He was 0.436 seconds quicker than his team-mate, Augusto Farfus (BR), who will start from second in the first race on Sunday. The privateer BMW drivers, Colin Turkington (GB) and Franz Engstler (DE), rounded off the very good overall result for BMW by qualifying fourth and tenth respectively.
After coming second and third in "Q1", Farfus and Priaulx showed perfect team work in the top-ten shoot-out. In the slipstream of his team-mate, Priaulx managed to put in the fastest lap of the weekend on his second lap. It's the fifth WTCC pole position for the triple world champion, who -- just like Farfus -- in Japan is running a BMW 320si WTCC GBS with a sequential gearbox. The last time he started a first race from pole was in Macau (CN) 2006. In addition, it's the first time since Brno in 2009 that two BMW drivers have achieved a one-two in qualifying.
Bart Mampaey (Team Principal):
"This was a very good performance by our drivers. Andy's lap time was rather unexpected. But Augusto gave him a fantastic slipstream, which ultimately led to the considerable gap to the rest of the field. Augusto's lap time is the more realistic reference time compared to our competitors. Now we will try to transform the excellent grid positions into a strong race result on Sunday."
Andy Priaulx (Car Number 11):
Qualifying 1: 3rd, 1:37.623 min -- Qualifying 2: 1st, 1:36.972 min -- Weight: 1,168 kg
"First of all I want to say thank you to Augusto. My team-mate really gave me the perfect slipstream in the second qualifying session, giving me the opportunity to set this lap time. But also big thanks to BMW Motorsport and everyone in the RBM team. They have all worked extremely hard over the past weeks. It's nice to be on pole again. Our mission, however, is far from being accomplished. We need to score two great results tomorrow in order to reduce our gap in the championship standings."
Augusto Farfus (Car Number 10):
Qualifying 1: 2nd, 1:37.455 min -- Qualifying 2: 2nd, 1:37.408 min -- Weight: 1,168 kg
"Our goal was to battle it out at the front end of the grid with both cars and, of course, to place Andy in front of his major rivals in the title fight. We executed this plan perfectly. Our team work has been great today, not just between Andy and me on the track, but also, as usual, within the whole crew. Furthermore, it was again obvious this circuit suits our car very well. This is a great basis to start from for tomorrow's races."