Former Arrows Formula 1 driver Enrique Bernoldi and Renault F1 tester Franck Montagny took a pole apiece in qualifying for the season opener of the Dallara Nissan World Series at Jarama
Montagny was in dominant form in race one qualifying, outpacing his rivals by over a quarter of a second. In contrast, 0.25s covers the top seven on the grid for race two, where Bernoldi will line up on pole for the first time since the Formula 3000 at Barcelona in 2000.
The two F1 hopefuls share the front row for both races, with Bernoldi's RC Motorsport team-mate Polo Villaamil lining up third on both occasions.
Team Carlin's series debut started strongly with Narain Karthikeyan and Bruce Jouanny taking fourth and fifth slots for the first race, but things didn't go so well in the highly competitive second session, where they rounded out the top 10 with Jouanny slightly the quicker.
Bas Leinders only just made the top 10 for race one because of an engine problem, but made huge strides in the later session to end up fourth fastest. American Paul Edwards accomplished a similar feat, bouncing back from a disappointing 16th to go seventh fastest for race two.
Epsilon's Jean Christophe Ravier took two solid top 10 grid places, eighth and sixth, and Williams F1 tester Marc Gene continues to learn the car despite his lack of test miles and was ninth and fifth fastest respectively.
It was a bad day for Montagny's highly rated Finnish team-mate Heikki Kovalainen, who was troubled with a persistent brake problem. This left him 12th on the grid for race one and a lowly 19th for the second race, although his decision not to waste his new tyres in that session could see him rise up the order in the race.
F Montagny Gabord 1m22.605s E Bernoldi RC 1m22.873s P Villaamil RC 1m23.128s N Karthikeyan Carlin 1m23.212s B Jouanny Carlin 1m23.268s A Vilarino Epsilon 1m23.299s
E Bernoldi RC 1m22.930s F Montagny Gabord 1m22.948s P Villaamil RC 1m23.952s B Leinders Racing Engineering 1m22.986s M Gene Campos 1m23.051s JC Ravier Epsilon 1m23.163sc
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