BTCC: Thruxton: Vauxhall Motorsport qualifying report

Green Flag MSA British Touring Car Championship 2002 Rounds 5/6 - Thruxton, Qualifying report - May 5 Muller shows who's boss at Thruxton. After a fierce battle with teammate, James Thompson, Vauxhall Motorsport's Yvan Muller claimed his...

Green Flag MSA British Touring Car Championship 2002
Rounds 5/6 - Thruxton, Qualifying report - May 5

Muller shows who's boss at Thruxton.

After a fierce battle with teammate, James Thompson, Vauxhall Motorsport's Yvan Muller claimed his second double pole position of the British Touring Car Championship season this afternoon in decisive style. With Thompson lining up alongside him, Rounds 5 & 6 at Hampshire's 2.3-mile Thruxton circuit will start tomorrow with an all Vauxhall Motorsport lock-out on the front row of the grids.

Frenchman, Muller left no doubt as to who was boss in the two, twenty-minute sessions and after first setting a stunning 1m16.567 pole position time for the 15-lap Sprint Race, he went on to better it by another two tenths posting a 1m16.369 for the Feature Race grid. And despite his best efforts, his teammate, Thompson was unable to quite catch him accepting that he was beaten by the better man on the day - even if it was by a mere 0.02 seconds. Thompson however, will also be pondering his decision to change only front tyres and not all four, unlike Muller.

EggSport's Matt Neal meanwhile had a solid qualifying session and he lines up fourth and third respectively on the Sprint and Feature race grids. Yet again, Astra Coupes consequently claim three of the top four spots of the grids.

Vauxhall Motorsport Quotes:

Yvan Muller, Car 2, Vauxhall Motorsport Astra Coupe
Sprint - Pole, 1m16.567s, Feature - Pole, 1m16.369s "That was a tough qualifying session. I got caught up in traffic on my first session, which meant I had to slow down and start again but fortunately I had a perfect second lap in the Feature race session. It was definitely very close between James and me. He is really at his best this year, you can feel he is strong and will be hard to beat."

James Thompson, Car 3, Vauxhall Motorsport Astra Coupe
Sprint - 2nd, 1:16.588, Feature - 2nd, 1:16.656 "I've got the speed but yet again I just missed out! At the end of the day, it was a close fight and Yvan did a better job than me. My second session was a bit scrappy and perhaps in hindsight, I should have done less laps but run four new tyres not just two."

OTHER VAUXHALL NEWS
The EggSport Astra Coupe pair of Matt Neal and Paul O'Neill had differing fortunes this afternoon with Neal spending most of the two qualifying sessions battling with the MG of Anthony Reid whilst O'Neill battled with the 42kgs success ballast he was carrying following his stunning win at Oulton Park two weeks ago. The Liverpudlian lines up eighth for both of tomorrow's Bank Holiday races whilst Neal lines up on the second row of the grid in fourth and third positions respectively for the Sprint and Feature races.

Matt Neal, Car 0, Egg Sport Vauxhall Astra Coupe
Sprint - 4th, 1:17.698, Feature - 3rd, 1:17.165

Paul O'Neill, Car 29, Egg Sport Vauxhall Astra Coupe
Sprint - 8th, 1:18.510, Feature - 8th, 1:18.291

Qualifying - Sprint Race
1 Yvan Muller (F) Vauxhall Astra Coupe 1m16.567s
2 James Thompson Vauxhall Astra Coupe 1:16.588
3 Anthony Reid MG ZS 1:17.590
4 Matt Neal Vauxhall Astra Coupe 1:17.698
5 Warren Hughes MG ZS 1:17.905
6 Andy Priaulx Honda Civic Type R 1:17.918

Qualifying - Feature Race
1 Yvan Muller (F) Vauxhall Astra Coupe 1m16.369s
2 James Thompson Vauxhall Astra Coupe 1:16.656
3 Matt Neal Vauxhall Astra Coupe 1:17.165
4 Anthony Reid MG ZS 1:17.381
5 Andy Priaulx Honda Civic Type R 1:17.628
6 Dan Eaves Peugeot 406 Coupe 1:17.747

Weather: Dry/Cloudy

-vm-

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About this article
Series BTCC
Drivers Andy Priaulx , Anthony Reid , Yvan Muller , Dan Eaves , Paul O'Neill , James Thompson , Warren Hughes , Matt Neal