Norbert Michelisz claimed his first DHL Pole Field of the 2020 WTCR − FIA World Touring Vehicle Cup season at MotorLand Aragón this afternoon, as Gilles Magnus profited from a penalty for Jean-Karl Vernay to land his maiden top originate, with the Belgian put to line up in Chase 3 at the entrance.
After Michelisz went quickest in Qualifying Q1, Vernay, on his 33rd birthday, put the tempo in the five-system Qualifying Q3 shootout in his Team Mulsanne Alfa Romeo Giulietta Veloce TCR by Romeo Ferraris, handiest for a notice limits infringement at Turn 5 to consequence in his Q3 time being deleted and handing the DHL Pole Field for Chase 3 to Magnus as an different.
Nonetheless whereas it changed into Halloween happiness for King of WTCR Michelisz (BRC Hyundai N LUKOIL Squadra Corse) and WTCR Rookie Driver contender Magnus (Comtoyou Racing), it changed into a case of Halloween hell for title contenders Yann Ehrlacher and Esteban Guerrieri, who both failed to progress past Qualifying Q1.
Goodyear #FollowTheLeader Ehrlacher, riding for Cyan Racing Lynk & Co, changed into already on the backfoot after studying he would originate Chase 1 from the bottom of the pile following an engine-alternate penalty sooner than the tournament. Nonetheless in P13 he’ll additionally be up against it to lengthen his lead in both Chase 2 and Chase 3 as smartly. “I had a notice limits violation on my first bustle and then a mountainous vibration on my entrance left,” acknowledged the dissatisfied Frenchman.
Ehrlacher’s handiest consolation is that main title rival Esteban Guerrieri changed into slower, qualifying handiest in P19 − making it refined for the ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport Honda driver to create up floor in the parts. “It wasn’t a appropriate session,” acknowledged Guerrieri. “We don’t hold appropriate doable this weekend, but we didn’t maximise what we had. I changed into compromised by a mistake on my first bustle and I started to pick out up understeer, then on my final bustle I changed into on used tyres. It changed into a miniature little bit of a multitude.”
King Michelisz abet on top in WTCR
Hungarian hero Norbert Michelisz, the King of WTCR following his 2019 title triumph, put a time of 2m05.838s to ranking five parts and real the DHL Pole Field for Chase 1 in his Goodyear-geared up Hyundai i30 N TCR.
It marks Michelisz’s first DHL pole of 2020 and his first since WTCR Chase of Malaysia final year. The opposite parts scorers in the tip five were Magnus, Vernay, Gabriele Tarquini and CUPRA-powered dwelling hero Mikel Azcona.
Thed Björk changed into sixth adopted by Nathanaël Berthon, Santiago Urrutia, Luca Engstler and Bence Boldisz. Yvan Muller and Néstor Girolami additionally made it thru to Q2 but Ehrlacher in P13, Tiago Monteiro, Aurélien Comte, wildcard Nicolas Baert, newcomer Josh Recordsdata, Tom Coronel, Guerrieri, Attila Tassi and Gábor Kismarty-Lechner all missed out on making further progress.
Magnus on build in Q2
RACB National Team driver Gilles Magnus changed into the quickest of the dozen drivers in the 10-minute Q2 session, to graduate to the Q3 shootout in his Audi RS 3 LMS. The 21-year-gentle Belgian changed into joined by Santiago Urrutia, Nathanaël Berthon − who jumped up the repeat to third after a late development. Norbert Michelisz changed into categorized fourth after his disallowed lap time for an apparent notice limits violation changed into reinstated. Vernay and Björk were fifth and sixth in the final repeat respectively adopted by Muller, Tarquini, Engstler and Spain’s Mikel Azcona, whose preserve of P10 hands him the reverse-grid pole for Chase 2. Girolami and Boldizs ended up P11 and P12.
How the fight for the Q3 DHL Pole space unfolded
Vernay changed into the most well-known to bustle in Q3, the Frenchman setting a benchmark time of 2m06.367s. Urrutia changed into subsequent to head, the Uruguayan proving sooner in the most well-known sector, slower in the second, sooner in the third − then slower in the fourth with a mountainous lock-up at the final corner, leaving him 0.785s off Vernay’s time. “Uninteresting mistake,” acknowledged Urrutia. “Nonetheless OK, I made it to Q3, which is serious.”
Berthon changed into subsequent to head, but changed into thwarted as he ready for his bustle when a damaged driveshaft compelled him to pull over in his Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport entry. It changed into another blow for the Frenchman, who changed into second quickest in both free yell durations, supplied that an engine alternate for the weekend system he’ll originate Chase 1 from the abet of the grid.
Now Björk had his likelihood. The Swede attach in a sturdy effort to head second to Vernay, with a time that left him 0.438s down on the Alfa Romeo.
That left Magnus as the final driver to bustle. The Belgian, who changed into quickest in both free yell durations, didn’t hold rather adequate when it counted. His time changed into appropriate adequate to bump Björk from second, but changed into 0.233s slower than Vernay, whose DHL pole − and five parts to head with the three he scored in Q1 − changed into real sooner than his submit-session sanction.
Chase 1 at WTCR Chase of Spain takes space on Sunday morning at 09h15 native time.