Bortolotti boosts title hopes by claiming pole at Monza

Mirko Bortolotti narrowly claimed pole position at Monza, ahead of the race that could well see him crowned as the 2011 FIA Formula 2 champion

Bortolotti boosts title hopes by claiming pole at Monza

Whilst all the other drivers were in the pits changing to their fresh tyres at the halfway point of the session, Bortolotti was lapping the circuit alone, using his one permitted boost lap to move 2.3s seconds clear of the rest of the field.

"This is my seventh pole of the season, but it will be only the third or fourth time I've actually started from the front row because we sometimes get into trouble," the Italian said. "Today I went out when everyone else was in just to stay out of trouble."

Ramon Pineiro will start alongside him on the front row, after setting a time just 0.025s slower, with Tobias Hegewald just behind.

After a torrid race yesterday, Miki Monras found some pace to qualify fourth, ahead of the ever improving Thiemo Storz.

Mikkel Mac will line up in sixth, just ahead of British duo Alex Brundle and Luciano Bacheta, with Benjamin Lariche and Jack Clarke completing the top 10.

The only man who can stop Bortolotti winning the championship this afternoon is Christopher Zanella, but yellow flags in the final sector - caused by yesterday's race winner Mihai Marinescu stopping on circuit - hampered his chances, leaving him down in 11th place.

Zanella has to win the race to maintain any chance of taking the title, whilst Bortolotti only needs ninth place to make absolutely sure of claiming the Williams F1 test prize.

Pos Driver Time Gap 1. Mirko Bortolotti 1m38.979s 2. Ramon Pineiro 1m39.004s + 0.025s 3. Tobias Hegewald 1m39.099s + 0.120s 4. Miki Monras 1m39.223s + 0.244s  5. Thiemo Storz 1m39.522s + 0.543s 6. Mikkel Mac 1m39.637s + 0.658s 7. Alex Brundle 1m39.710s + 0.731s 8. Luciano Bacheta 1m40.088s + 1.109s 9. Benjamin Lariche 1m40.161s + 1.182s 10. Jack Clarke 1m40.279s + 1.300s 11. Christopher Zanella 1m40.299s + 1.320s 12. Maxim Snegirev 1m40.444s + 1.465s 13. Kelvin Snoeks 1m40.445s + 1.466s 14. Plamen Kralev 1m40.451s + 1.472s 15. Parthiva Sureshwaren 1m40.538s + 1.559s 16. Julian Theobald 1m40.734s + 1.755s 17. James Cole 1m41.326s + 2.347s 18. Mihai Marinescu 1m41.390s + 2.411s 19. Sunghak Mun 1m41.654s + 2.675s 
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Mirko Bortolotti clinches Formula 2 title with Monza win

Mirko Bortolotti clinches Formula 2 title with Monza win
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