The DG Sport Compétition pairing of Mat’o Homola and Pierre-Yves Corthals placed the Opel Astra cars on top of the TCR International Series timesheets for the first time. The Belgian beat his Slovak teammate in Q1, but eventually it was Homola who emerged as the fastest in Q2, beating Corthals by nearly four tenths of a second.
However, Homola could not fully benefit from his exploits as he will be demoted to the back of the grid for this afternoon’s Race 1 following an engine change that occurred after yesterday’s first Practice.
Corthals will therefore inherit pole position with Hugo Valente (Lukoil Craft-Bamboo SEAT León) completing the front row. Roberto Colciago (M1RA Honda Civic Type-R) will start from the third spot alongside Davit Kajaia (GE-Force Alfa Romeo Giulietta) who managed to claim fourth position despite the 30-kilo Success Ballast.
Jean-Karl Vernay (Leopard Racing Volkswagen Golf GTi) and James Nash (Lukoil Craft-Bamboo SEAT León) will fill the third row.
Ferenc Ficza (Zele Racing SEAT León) qualified in tenth place and so won pole position on the top-ten reverse grid for tomorrow’s Race 2, with Dušan Borković (GE-Force Alfa Romeo Giulietta) at his side.
Qualifying 1: Corthals beats Homola
The DG Sport Compétition Opel Astra cars made an impressive 1-2 with Pierre-Yves Corthals setting the fastest lap of 2:11.903 ahead of his teammate Mat’o Homola (2:12.149).
Roberto Colciago was third fastest (2:12.956) in the best of the M1RA Honda Civic Type-R cars, followed by Jean-Karl Vernay (2:13.223), Dušan Borković(2:13.273) and Hugo Valente (2:13.291).
On his last attempt Attila Tassi (2:13.297) moved up to seventh, demoting by one position Ferenc Ficza, James Nash and Gianni Morbidelli. Pepe Oriola and Davit Kajaia rounded off the top-twelve for Q2. It was a close call for the Georgian driver who had had his fastest lap disallowed for trespassing the track limits.
Surprisingly, Stefano Comini – the fastest in yesterday’s Free Practice 2 – was again struggling with the balance of his Audi and could not make the cut, together with Michela Cerruti, Giacomo Altoè and Duncan Ende.
Qualifying 2: Homola and Corthals encore
Homola set the first pole position in TCR for Opel, posting a fastest lap of 2:12.073 that was nearly four tenths ahead of the rest of the field. Corthals placed the second Astra in second position (2:12.451) with Valente (2:12.656) third, Colciago (2:12.672) fourth, Kajaia (2:12.877) fifth and Vernay (2:12.896) sixth.