Yvan Muller has scored his third consecutive World Touring Car Championship pole position as he continues his domination of the timesheets at Valencia's Ricardo Tormo Circuit.
Muller, who had topped the two free practice sessions earlier on, made it safetly through Q1 in sixth position, giving him fifth on the grid for Race 2. Teammate and championship leader Rob Huff was fourth quickest, meaning the Briton will line up directly behind his French rival on the grid for the second race. The third Chevrolet of Alain Menu got through in second place having been 14th with five minutes of Q1 remaining.
Michel Nykjaer got himself up into eighth place at the checkered flag, knocking Sunred teammate Pepe Oriola outside of the top ten at his home circuit. Franz Engstler assumed P10 and pole position for Race 2. That repeated his result from qualifying at Oschersleben, where he went onto win the second race. He will have fellow BMW driver Tom Coronel for company on the front row of the grid.
Mehdi Bennani will start from the back of the grid after spinning out into the gravel on his first flying lap in Q1.
In Q2 Muller went quickest ahead of Huff and Menu after their first flying efforts. Gabriele Tarquini completed his first flying lap at the checkered flag and moved up to second place, but the Chevrolets then all improved their times. Muller held onto pole, 0.456s ahead of Huff who retook second place at the end. Tarquini slipped to third, but his time was just 0.077s behind Huff's.
Tiago Monteiro was less than a tenth behind teammate Tarquini with his final effort, with Coronel improving to fifth at the end. He bumped Menu down to sixth, with just 0.020s between the pair.
Norbert Michelisz was the top Yokohama Trophy runner in seventh, 0.028s ahead of local star Javier Villa. Engstler and Nykjaer completed the top ten.
Qualifying 1 times:
|1||Gabriele Tarquini||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:43.907||5|
|2||Alain Menu||Chevrolet||Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T||1:43.992||0.085||6|
|3||Norbert Michelisz||Zengo||BMW 320 TC||1:44.047||0.140||9|
|4||Robert Huff||Chevrolet||Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T||1:44.060||0.153||6|
|5||Tiago Monteiro||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:44.086||0.179||5|
|6||Yvan Muller||Chevrolet||Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T||1:44.155||0.248||6|
|7||Javier Villa||Proteam||BMW 320 TC||1:44.395||0.488||3|
|8||Michel Nykjaer||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:44.461||0.554||8|
|9||Tom Coronel||ROAL||BMW 320 TC||1:44.565||0.658||6|
|10||Franz Engstler||Engstler||BMW 320 TC||1:44.577||0.670||6|
|11||Pepe Oriola||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:44.614||0.707||9|
|12||Kristian Poulsen||Engstler||BMW 320 TC||1:44.734||0.827||8|
|13||Darryl O’Young||Bamboo||Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T||1:44.741||0.834||9|
|14||David Sigacev||KK||BMW 320 TC||1:44.768||0.861||9|
|15||Fredy Barth||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:44.849||0.942||8|
|16||Stefano D’Aste||Wiechers||BMW 320 TC||1:44.905||0.998||9|
|17||Robert Dahlgren||Polestar||Volvo C30 Drive||1:45.082||1.175||7|
|18||Yukinori Taniguchi||Bamboo||Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T||1:45.096||1.189||9|
|19||Aleksei Dudukalo||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:45.113||1.206||8|
|20||Fabio Fabiani||Proteam||BMW 320si||2:04.283||20.376||3|
|21||Mehdi Bennani||Proteam||BMW 320 TC||No time||—||1|
Qualifying 2 times:
|1||Yvan Muller||Chevrolet||Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T||1:42.649||5|
|2||Robert Huff||Chevrolet||Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T||1:43.105||0.456||5|
|3||Gabriele Tarquini||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:43.182||0.533||4|
|4||Tiago Monteiro||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:43.269||0.620||5|
|5||Tom Coronel||ROAL||BMW 320 TC||1:43.367||0.718||5|
|6||Alain Menu||Chevrolet||Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T||1:43.387||0.738||5|
|7||Norbert Michelisz||Zengo||BMW 320 TC||1:43.731||1.082||5|
|8||Javier Villa||Proteam||BMW 320 TC||1:43.759||1.110||5|
|9||Franz Engstler||Engstler||BMW 320 TC||1:44.077||1.428||5|
|10||Michel Nykjaer||Sunred||Sunred SR Leon 1.6T||1:44.836||2.187||3|