BMW Team RBM enjoyed a perfect qualifying session in Okayama, with Andy Priaulx taking his first pole position since Macau 2006. Augusto Farfus will join his team-mate on the front row for the first of tomorrow's races.

Priaulx was delighted with the result, but was quick to thank Farfus for giving him a good slipstream and the rest of the RBM team for their hard work in the run up to the event. “First of all I want to say thank you to Augusto,” he said. “My team-mate really gave me the perfect slipstream in the second qualifying session, giving me the opportunity to set this lap time. But also big thanks to BMW Motorsport and everyone in the RBM team. They have all worked extremely hard over the past weeks.

He is also well aware that no points are scored in qualifying. “It's nice to be on pole again. Our mission, however, is far from being accomplished. We need to score two great results tomorrow in order to reduce our gap in the championship standings.”

Farfus was pleased with the team's qualifying performance. “Our goal was to battle it out at the front end of the grid with both cars and, of course, to place Andy in front of his major rivals in the title fight,” he explained.

“We executed this plan perfectly. Our team work has been great today, not just between Andy and me on the track, but also, as usual, within the whole crew. Furthermore, it was again obvious this circuit suits our car very well. This is a great basis to start from for tomorrow's races.”

Team Principal Bart Mampaey commented: “This was a very good performance by our drivers. Andy's lap time was rather unexpected. But Augusto gave him a fantastic slipstream, which ultimately led to the considerable gap to the rest of the field.

“Augusto's lap time is the more realistic reference time compared to our competitors,” he added. “Now we will try to transform the excellent grid positions into a strong race result on Sunday.”