Difficult conditions in the WTCC qualifying in Mexico. Puebla (Mexico), 25th June 2005. BMW Team Italy-Spain's Antonio Garcia (ESP) was the fastest BMW driver in qualifying for the ninth round of the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) at...
Difficult conditions in the WTCC qualifying in Mexico.
Puebla (Mexico), 25th June 2005. BMW Team Italy-Spain's Antonio Garcia (ESP) was the fastest BMW driver in qualifying for the ninth round of the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) at the "Autodromo Miguel E. Abed" near Puebla. With a time of 1:30.831 the 24-year-old secured seventh place on the grid for tomorrow's first race. The fastest driver of the session was Roberto Colciago (Honda) in 1:29.830. However, the Italian will be relegated by ten places on the grid, as will second-placed SEAT driver Peter Terting, following an engine change. Therefore, it will be Alfa Romeo's Fabrizio Giovanardi who will start from pole position.
The organisers worked on the 3.032-kilometre circuit up until the very last minute in order to complete the extensive reconstruction work. Nevertheless, the track surface turned out to be extremely slippery whenever a driver went off the racing line, thus causing many off-track moments and accidents during the course of the free practice sessions. Qualifying also had to be red-flagged three times. Jörg Müller (GER) had to watch the battle for the grid positions from the BMW Team Germany pits as he had been forced to go off the racing line in the second free practice session in order to avoid hitting BMW driver Giuseppe Ciro who spun directly in front of him. This manoeuvre resulted in Jörg Müller hitting the crash barriers. The front of his car was seriously damaged as was the underbody. It is not yet clear if the Schnitzer Motorsport crew will succeed in repairing his BMW 320i in time for the races on Sunday.
Hampered by 60 kilos weight handicap, reigning European Touring Car Champion Andy Priaulx (GBR) of BMW Team UK took his BMW 320i to 14th grid position, with BMW Team Germany driver Dirk Müller (GER), who also contests this weekend with a 60 kilo weight handicap, finishing 15th, directly behind Priaulx. No other driver is going to contest the Puebla rounds with the maximum weight handicap. Garcia's team-mate, Alessandro Zanardi, is 19th on the grid.