Yvan Muller will start the World Touring Car Championship’s first race in Russia from pole position after defeating Tom Coronel by 0.07 seconds at Moscow Raceway.
BMW driver Coronel had set the pace in the first of the morning’s practice sessions and again in Qualifying 1, but was to be denied a maiden race one pole position.
With rain starting to fall, everyone’s first attempt in Q2 would be the one that decided the order in the top twelve, with Muller just edging out Coronel. Rob Huff and Norbert Michelisz made it four different brands in the top four as they claimed spots on the second row in their SEAT and Honda respectively.
Gabriele Tarquini was fifth in his factory Honda, while James Thompson put Lada sixth at their home event. Pepe Oriola was seventh ahead of Michel Nykjaer, who was the top Yokohama Trophy driver.
Charles Ng used the strength of the BMW to claim ninth ahead of Mehdi Bennani, who will start race two from the reverse grid pole. James Nash and Tom Chilton will have to make do with spots on the sixth row for both races.