Slovakia Superstars: Tonio Liuzzi earns pole in thrilling session
|By Andrew van Leeuwen||Saturday, June 8th 2013, 16:08 GMT|
Tonio Liuzzi will start the first Superstars International Series race at the Slovakiaring from pole position, thanks to a stunning last-gasp lap in a tense qualifying session.
The Romeo Ferraris Mercedes driver first hit the top of the timesheets at the halfway mark in the session, dipping into the 2m10s bracket for the first time in the process.
But, with five minutes left, the ex-Formula 1 driver tumbled down the order to fifth, Luigi Ferrara (Roma Racing Mercedes) and Giovanni Berton (Dinamic BMW) seemingly on their way to locking out the front row.
With just minutes left in the session, Liuzzi emerged for one last crack at pole, a spectacular 2m09.552s effort on the flag handing him the top spot by more than a second.
With no time to respond, Ferrara and Berton were forced to settle for second and third, with Berton's team-mate Max Mugelli proving his good practice form was no fluke by finishing fourth.
After going fastest in practice two, Fabrizio Giovanardi struggled to make the same impact in qualifying, ending up fifth in the Petri Porsche, one place ahead of Liuzzi;s team-mate and series leader Thomas Biagi.
Gianni Morbidelli was the best placed Audi Sport Italia entry in seventh, ahead of Andrea Bacci, Andrea Larini and Mauro Trentin.
Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap 1. Tonio Liuzzi Ferraris Mercedes 2m09.552s 2. Luigi Ferrara Roma Mercedes 2m10.636s + 1.084s 3. Giovanni Berton Dinamic BMW 2m10.683s + 1.131s 4. Max Mugelli Dinamic BMW 2m10.784s + 1.232s 5. Fabrizio Giovanardi Petri Porsche 2m10.857s + 1.305s 6. Thomas Biagi Ferraris Mercedes 2m10.927s + 1.375s 7. Gianni Morbidelli Audi Italia 2m11.291s + 1.739s 8. Andrea Bacci CAAL Mercedes 2m13.409s + 3.857s 9. Andrea Larini Ferlito Jaguar 2m13.630s + 4.078s 10. Mauro Trentin Dinamic BMW 2m13.780s + 4.228s 11. Diabolik Ferlito Jaguar 2m14.165s + 4.613s 12. Roberto Benedetti RC Cadillac 2m15.169s + 5.617s 13. Ferdinando Geri Audi Italia 2m15.730s + 6.178s 14. Francesco Ascani Todi BMW 2m16.991s + 7.439s 15. Francesco Sini Solaris Chevrolet 16. Leonardo Baccarelli CAAL Mercedes