Nurburgring Auto GP: Narain Karthikeyan continues pole streak
|By Peter Mills||Friday, August 16th 2013, 14:57 GMT|
Narain Karthikeyan secured his third consecutive Auto GP pole position at the Nurburgring.
Since switching to David Sears' Super Nova team prior to the Silverstone meeting in June, the Indian has started from the top spot for all Auto GP feature races.
Friday morning free practice pacesetter Vittorio Ghirelli will join his team-mate on the front row for Saturday's opening race. Ghirelli was the last man to deny Karthikeyan a pole position when he qualified fastest at the Hungaroring three months ago.
The Italian appeared set for his second pole after posting an early lap of 1m19.219s that propelled him to the top of the timesheets.
But Karthikeyan demoted his team-mate into second by breaking into the 1m18s around two-thirds of the way through the half-hour session.
Karthikeyan was subsequently stripped of two fastest laps, but an effort of 1m18.330s, just three minutes before the chequered flag, was not taken away from him by race officials and would stand as the pole time.
Consistent frontrunner Kevin Giovesi, who set fastest lap last time out at Mugello, also challenged for pole honours and will start third.
Ibiza Racing's duo of new recruit Tamas Pal Kiss and championship leader Sergio Campana are set to line up in fourth and fifth positions.
Campana narrowly edged out his title rival Kimiya Sato by 0.093s. Both men have amassed 138 points at the head of the drivers' standings.
Meindert van Buuren was another to have a fastest time deleted, and the Dutch rookie finished seventh.
Series debutant Roberto La Rocca claimed 12th, two places above fellow newcomer Michela Cerruti.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Narain Karthikeyan Super Nova 1m18.330s 2. Vittorio Ghirelli Super Nova 1m18.542s +0.212s 3. Kevin Giovesi Ghinzani 1m18.744s +0.414s 4. Tamas Pal Kiss Ibiza 1m18.992s +0.662s 5. Sergio Campana Ibiza 1m19.090s +0.760s 6. Kimiya Sato Euronova 1m19.183s +0.853s 7. Meindert van Buuren Manor MP 1m19.294s +0.964s 8. Robert Visoiu Ghinzani 1m19.316s +0.986s 9. Daniel de Jong Manor MP 1m19.443s +1.113s 10. Andrea Roda Virtuosi 1m19.636s +1.306s 11. Yoshitaka Kuroda Euronova 1m19.804s +1.474s 12. Roberto La Rocca Comtec/Virtuosi 1m19.819s +1.489s 13. Michele La Rosa MLR 71 1m20.030s +1.700s 14. Michela Cerruti MLR 71 1m20.106s +1.776s 15. Max Snegirev Virtuosi 1m20.458s +2.128s