Bertolini Takes Spa Pole In Maserati Front-Row Lockout

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The Swiss Team-run Maserati Quattroporte dominated qualifying for the International Superstars Series round at Spa-Francorchamps, with Andrea Bertolini more than a second quicker than nearest rival and teammate Alessandro Pier Guidi on a wet track.

Bertolini posted his best time of 2:52.538 early on in the session, with Pier Guidi coming closest albeit 1.018 adrift.

Luigi Ferrara was next best in his CAAL Racing Mercedes C63 AMG, a further six and half tenths behind Pier Guidi. Gianni Morbidelli was fourth in his Audi Sport Italia RS4. The former champion looks set to make his series comeback for real this weekend after suffering engine problems last time out at Misano. Things did not go entirely smoothly for Morbidelli during the session though – a gear lever failure slowing him down at one point. He was pipped to third by Ferrara by just 0.062s.

Romeo Ferraris Mercedes duo Max Pigoli and Johnny Herbert will start from the third row of the grid, separated by more than three tenths. Behind them on the timesheets were the first of the BMWs, with Stefano Gabellini ahead of Thomas Biagi. The latter will only start the first race from tenth though due to a two-place penalty carried over from Misano. The ROAL-run duo were 2.4 and 2.6 seconds away from Bertolini respectively.

Michela Cerruti recorded the ninth best time in her Romeo Ferraris Mercedes, narrowly ahead of the Ferlito Motors Jaguar XF of Francesco Sini.

The third factory BMW of Alberto Cerqui could only manage 12th, behind privateer Alessandro Garofano who has switched from RGA Sportsmanship to Movisport for this weekend after making his season debut last time out at Misano.

The session was interrupted by a red flag after the lone Chrysler 300C of Mauro Cesari went up in flames.

Qualifying times:

Pos Driver Team Car Time Gap Laps
1 Andrea Bertolini Swiss Team Maserati Quattroporte 2:52.538 4
2 Alessandro Pier Guidi Swiss Team Maserati Quattroporte 2:53.556 1.018 6
3 Luigi Ferrara CAAL Racing Mercedes C63 AMG 2:54.208 1.670 8
4 Gianni Morbidelli Audi Sport Italia Audi RS4 2:54.270 1.732 6
5 Max Pigoli Romeo Ferraris Mercedes C63 AMG 2:54.408 1.870 8
6 Johnny Herbert Romeo Ferraris Mercedes AMG C63 2:54.769 2.231 6
7 Stefano Gabellini Team BMW Italia BMW M3 E92 2:55.000 2.462 8
8 Thomas Biagi Team BMW Italia BMW M3 E92 2:55.402 2.864 8
9 Michela Cerruti Romeo Ferraris Mercedes C63 AMG 2:55.823 3.285 8
10 Francesco Sini Ferlito Motors Jaguar XF/R5.0 2:55.911 3.373 6
11 Alessandro Garofano Movisport BMW M3 E90 2:56.200 3.662 7
12 Alberto Cerqui Team BMW Italia BMW M3 E92 2:56.836 4.298 7
13 Andrea Dromedari Romeo Ferraris Mercedes C63 AMG 2:58.848 6.310 7
14 Francesco Ascani Todi Corse BMW M3 E90 2:59.013 6.475 9
15 Sandro Bettini Movisport BMW M3 E90 2:59.558 7.020 7
16 Luigi Cecchi Ferlito Motors Jaguar XF/R5.0 2:59.715 7.177 6
17 Roberto Benedetti RC Motorsport Cadillac CTS V 3:01.187 8.649 8
18 Riccardo Romagnoli CAAL Racing Mercedes C63 AMG 3:03.878 11.340 1
19 Mauro Cesari MRT by Nocentini Chrysler 300 C SRT-8 3:07.267 14.729 3
20 Pindari/Tambussi Movisport BMW 550i E60 3:12.681 20.143 7
21 Leonardo Baccarelli Todi Corse BMW 550i E60 3:16.124 23.586 7
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