NA 2000: Trois Rivieres qualifying notes

Gomes takes Trois-Rivières pole in wet qualifying Trois-Rivieres, Que-- (31 July 04)--Marcos Gomes scored the pole position for Sunday's North American Formula Renault 2000 race at the 35th running of the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières with ...

Gomes takes Trois-Rivières pole in wet qualifying

Trois-Rivieres, Que-- (31 July 04)--Marcos Gomes scored the pole position for Sunday's North American Formula Renault 2000 race at the 35th running of the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières with a 1:12.488-second lap of the 1.502-mile temporary street circuit in rainy conditions, besting championship points leader Juan Martin Ponte by just .017 of a second in a fiercely competitive session, which saw the top nine drivers qualify within one second of Gomes' time.

The pole position is the third of the season for Gomes, who moved to fifth ahead of Renato Jader David in the championship standings with the five bonus pole points. Gomes knows that he has a lot of ground yet to make up to Ponte, but he also knows that he has to finish the race to make a dent in Ponte's lead.

"I know we have a good chance to win tomorrow, no matter what the conditions are," said the GTI/Roshrans/ITUPETRO pilot. "I want to win and get as many points out of the weekend as I can, of course, but I have to keep in mind that this is a long championship and points will be important in the end. The track is very challenging with the bumps and the variety of surfaces, but it is a lot of fun, and I know that the race is going to be exciting tomorrow."

Championship points leader Ponte was disappointed to have come so close to the pole but not get it, but is feeling confident about the race.

"I did the best that I could, there was no more speed in the car, so I am happy to get the most out of it, but its of course difficult to be so close and not get it!" said Ponte about the pole and the five bonus points. "We should be ok in the race as we have a very good car, and I will try to keep the championship in mind."

Aim Autosport's Mark Wilkins leapt up to third on the grid late in the session, and will start alongside Ricardo Imery, who sits second in the championship behind his Eurointernational teammate. Gelles Racing's Renato Jader David was quickest in the early stages of the half-hour session, but will line up fifth in Sunday's race, with Katherine Legge putting in another strong qualifying effort in just her second street event to take sixth. Toronto podium finisher Brandon Thomas will start in seventh, alongside Montreal native Antoine Bessette. Louis-Phillippe Dumoulin and Phillippe Gelinas comprise an all-Quebequois fifth row for the 32-lap event.

<pre> Formula Renault 2000 Trois-Riviers Qualifying, Top Ten Times:

Marcos Gomes            1:12.488
Juan Martin Ponte       1:12.505
Mark Wilkins            1:12.517
Ricardo Imery           1:12.848
Renato Jader David      1:12.941
Katherine Legge         1:13.035
Brandon Thomas          1:13.235
Antoine Bessette        1:13.412
L-P Dumoulin            1:13.416
Philippe Gelinas        1:14.422

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About this article
Series Formula Renault
Drivers Katherine Legge , Antoine Bessette , Juan Martin Ponte , Ricardo Imery , Mark Wilkins , Marcos Gomes