Zandvoort qualifying: Scheider edges rivals

Timo Scheider claimed pole position for Sunday's DTM race at Zandvoort by the narrowest of margins, with the top four runners all covered by just 0.018s. Martin Tomczyk was a narrow second in a session dominated by the DTM's young guns, but which was also notable for some surprise omissions from the Super Pole runners

Zandvoort qualifying: Scheider edges rivals

Opel star Scheider was the sixth to run in the session, and had local favourite Christijan Alber's (AMG Mercedes) time of 1m35.345s to aim for. Scheider eclipsed the Dutchman's time by just 0.009s, but then had to sit and watch as Mattias Ekstrom (Abt Audi) and Tomczyk (Abt Audi) both came agonisingly close to snatching pole.

Despite being somewhat off the pace in the first two sectors, Tomczyk slotted in the second fastest time - 0.005s off pole - with Ekstrom's effort earning him fourth on the grid.

Having been fastest in the pre-Super Pole qualifying session, Alain Menu (Opel) had the honour of running last, but the Swiss ace was unable to match his young rivals and had to settle for fifth, 0.128s off Scheider's pace.

Marcel Fassler (AMG Mercedes) qualified sixth, ahead of the Opel trio of Manuel Reuter, Peter Dumbreck - who lost time with a big lock-up into the first turn - and Jeroen Bleekemolen. Christian Abt was the slowest of the Super Pole runners.

But almost more notable than the thrilling battle for the pole was the list of those drivers who took no part in the Super Pole. The most significant of the absentees was Bernd Schneider (AMG Mercedes). The championship leader struggled early in the qualifying session and then ran off the track at the final corner whilst on a lap that would have put him in the top ten. He finished 13th, doing severe damage to his title hopes.

Jean Alesi (AMG Mercedes) was another absentee, as Mercedes found itself struggling for pace against Audi and Opel. The latter marque put in a particularly impressive performance, putting five of its six cars into the top ten. Jo Winkelhock (a lowly 18th) was the marque's only absentee).

The Abt-Audi team had three representatives in the Super Pole, but they didn't include reigning champion Laurent Aiello. The Frenchman was only 14th fastest in the qualifying session.

DTM, Zandvoort, qualifying
Pos Driver (Nat) Team Car Time
Timo Scheider (D) Phoenix Opel Astra V8 Coupe 1m35.336s
Martin Tomczyk (D) S line Audi Junior Team Abt Audi TT-R 1m35.341s
Christijan Albers (NL) AMG Mercedes-Benz CLK, 1m35.345s
Mattias Ekstrom (S) Abt-Audi TT-R, 1m35.354s
Alain Menu (SUI) Holzer Opel Astra V8 Coupe 1m35.464s
Marcel Fassler (SUI) AMG Mercedes-Benz CLK 1m35.681s
Manuel Reuter (D) Holzer Opel Astra V8 Coupé, 1m35.764s
Peter Dumbreck (GB) Phoenix Opel Astra V8 Coupé, 1m36.311s
Jeroen Bleekemolen European Opel Astra V8 Coupe 1m36.695s
Christian Abt (D) Abt-Audi 1m36.773s

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