BMW sweeps front row for Lausitz DTM race with Bruno Spengler and Augusto Farfus
|By Jamie O'Leary||Saturday, May 5th 2012, 13:00 GMT|
BMW claimed its first DTM pole position since 1992 as Bruno Spengler and Augusto Farfus locked out the front row at Lausitz.
Spengler had sewn the seeds of his pole in Q3, the Canadian having only completed two laps on his way to setting the third fastest time. Not only did this secure his progression to the single-lap Q4 shoot-out, it also meant his tyres were less worn than those of his rivals, who had all completed three laps already.
The Schnitzer driver's 1m18.777s lap knocked Gary Paffett's HWA Mercedes off the top spot, and was then unchallenged by both Mike Rockenfeller and Farfus.
Farfus came closest to beating Spengler ahead of what will be only his second DTM start on Sunday. The RBM driver was 0.038s slower than his stablemate. Championship leader Paffett will head the second row ahead of Rockenfeller's Phoenix Audi.
Edoardo Mortara failed to repeat his Hockenheim achievement of making Q4, but the Rosberg Audi did enough to secure fifth on the grid, ahead of HWA's Jamie Green, the RMG BMW of champion Martin Tomczyk and Mattias Ekstrom's Abt Audi.
Two more Audi drivers followed with Miguel Molina (Phoenix) ninth and Adrien Tambay (Abt) continuing his impressive rookie DTM campaign with 10th - his first top 10 qualifying result. He had earlier edged out Mortara's team-mate Filipe Albuquerque by just 0.006s to reach Q3.
The big surprise of Q2 was that two-time champion Timo Scheider was eliminated, the Abt driver failing to make the cut in 12th despite setting a time only 0.4s slower than pacesetter Farfus. His fate was sealed when first Paffett and then Spengler pumped in late fliers to ensure their own progression.
For the second year in a row, Ralf Schumacher followed up a promising race result at the previous event by failing to make it out of Q1 at Lausitz, the HWA man one of four Mercedes drivers among the six names eliminated from the opening part of qualifying.
Fellow grand prix winner David Coulthard was among them too, the Mucke driver twice locking up in the final complex of corners and ending up 20th on the grid.
Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap 1. Bruno Spengler Schnitzer BMW 1m18.777s 2. Augusto Farfus RBM BMW 1m18.815s + 0.038s 3. Gary Paffett HWA Mercedes 1m18.820s + 0.043s 4. Mike Rockenfeller Phoenix Audi 1m19.206s + 0.429s 5. Edoardo Mortara Rosberg Audi 1m18.374s Q3 6. Jamie Green HWA Mercedes 1m18.461s Q3 7. Martin Tomczyk RMG BMW 1m18.490s Q3 8. Mattias Ekstrom Abt Audi 1m18.569s Q3 9. Miguel Molina Phoenix Audi 1m18.667s Q3 10. Adrien Tambay Abt Audi 1m18.686s Q3 11. Filipe Albuquerque Rosberg Audi 1m18.749s Q2 12. Timo Scheider Abt Audi 1m18.758s Q2 13. Andy Priaulx RBM BMW 1m18.771s Q2 14. Joey Hand RMG BMW 1m18.817s Q2 15. Robert Wickens Persson Mercedes 1m18.840s Q2 16. Christian Vietoris HWA Mercedes 1m18.862s Q2 17. Ralf Schumacher HWA Mercedes 1m19.506s Q1 18. Roberto Merhi Persson Mercedes 1m19.557s Q1 19. Susie Wolff Mucke Mercedes 1m19.584s Q1 20. David Coulthard Mucke Mercedes 1m19.672s Q1 21. Dirk Werner Schnitzer BMW 1m19.737s Q1 22. Rahel Frey Abt Audi 1m20.415s Q1