Romain Grosjean claimed pole position for GP2 Asia at Imola, denying Sam Bird in the final moments of the qualifying session.
iSport driver Bird had been sitting in provisional pole position as the session reached its conclusion, with Grosjean in second for DAMS. But the Frenchman set a blistering time on his final lap to steal pole from the Briton.
The result gives Grosjean a second pole position from the two GP2 Asia rounds after achieving the same result in qualifying at Abu Dhabi. He also set a new lap record for the Imola circuit's new configuration.
The achievement is even more impressive considering that Grosjean's car stopped out on track half way through the first morning practice session, which also kept him out of the second session.
The session was halted nine minutes in when a piece of car was found lying on the track.
Michael Herck had been amongst the pacesetters early in the session, and the Romanian Coloni driver ended up third behind Grosjean and Bird. In fourth was ART driver Jules Bianchi, who is now tied on points at the top of the standings after Grosjean collected two bonus points for his pole position. Giedo van der Garde was fifth for Addax.
Qualifying session times:
|2||Sam Bird||iSport International||1:27.384||+0.317||14|
|3||Michael Herck||Scuderia Coloni||1:27.558||+0.491||15|
|4||Jules Bianchi||Lotus ART||1:27.676||+0.609||16|
|5||Giedo van der Garde||Barwa Addax Team||1:27.735||+0.668||15|
|6||Josef Kral||Arden International||1:27.834||+0.767||16|
|7||Marcus Ericsson||iSport International||1:27.872||+0.805||15|
|8||Jolyon Palmer||Arden International||1:27.898||+0.831||15|
|9||Davide Valsecchi||Team AirAsia||1:27.909||+0.842||13|
|11||Luiz Razia||Team AirAsia||1:28.073||+1.006||13|
|12||Andrea Caldarelli||Ocean Racing Technology||1:28.093||+1.026||16|
|14||Oliver Turvey||Ocean Racing Technology||1:28.151||+1.084||15|
|15||Esteban Gutierrez||Lotus ART||1:28.160||+1.093||15|
|16||Stefano Coletti||Trident Racing||1:28.194||+1.127||16|
|17||Rodolfo Gonzalez||Trident Racing||1:28.310||+1.243||16|
|20||Dani Clos||Racing Engineering||1:28.373||+1.306||14|
|21||Fairuz Fauzy||Super Nova Racing||1:28.382||+1.315||16|
|22||Johnny Cecotto||Super Nova Racing||1:28.490||+1.423||15|
|23||Charles Pic||Barwa Addax Team||1:28.549||+1.482||15|
|25||Nathanael Berthon||Racing Engineering||1:28.646||+1.579||15|
|26||Luca Filippi||Scuderia Coloni||3:54.107||+27.040||1|