Muller ends Maserati pole drought

Vitaphone Racing's Alex Muller became the first Maserati MC12 driver to top the times in FIA GT Championship qualifying for more than a season at Oschersleben today

Muller ends Maserati pole drought

Muller claimed the top spot around the 2.3-mile German track with a 1m24.546s lap, just over three tenths clear of Karl Wendlinger aboard the K plus K Saleen S7R.

It was the first time a Maserati had claimed a genuine pole since the Nogaro FIA GT round at the end of 2007, although Andrea Bertolini had inherited pole at Adria last month after Wendlinger's exclusion for a technical infringement.

Muller, who shares the #2 Vitaphone MC12 with Miguel Ramos, said: "I got the maximum out of the car and am happy to have taken pole at the home race for me and the team. There's still a lot of work to do on the race set-up, but I'm confident."

Wendlinger , who partners Ryan Sharp, was surprised not to have gone faster during the 15-minute session.

"I expected to be quicker, but maybe the rain before the session changed the grip level," he said. "For the first time this weekend we had a bit of understeer."

GT2 honours went to Porsche factory driver Jorg Bergmeister, who is making his first appearance in FIA GTs since 2004. The late stand-in at the British Trackspeed squad qualified his 2008-spec Porsche 911 GT3-RSR two tenths clear of Martin Ragginger in Brixia Racing's similar 911.

Pos Cl Qual Driver Car Time Gap 1. GT1 Alex Muller Maserati MC 12 1m24.546s 2. GT1 Karl Wendlinger Saleen S7 1m24.865s + 0.319s 3. GT1 Xavier Maassen Corvette Z06 1m25.160s + 0.614s 4. GT1 Michael Bartels Maserati MC 12 1m25.278s + 0.732s 5. GT1 Adam Lacko Saleen S7 1m25.291s + 0.745s 6. GT1 Bert Longin Corvette Z06 1m25.560s + 1.014s 7. GT1 Mike Hezemans Corvette Z06 1m25.702s + 1.156s 8. GT1 Bas Leinders Ford GT 1m26.634s + 2.088s 9. GT1 Luke Hines Saleen S7 1m26.941s + 2.395s 10. GT1 Michael Krumm Nissan GT-R 1m27.431s + 2.885s 11. GT2 Jorg Bergmeister Porsche 911 GT3 1m28.606s + 4.060s 12. GT2 Martin Ragginger Porsche 911 GT3 1m28.803s + 4.257s 13. GT2 Gianmaria Bruni Ferrari F430 1m28.953s + 4.407s 14. GT2 Marco Holzer Porsche 911 GT3 1m29.108s + 4.562s 15. GT2 Andrew Kirkaldy Ferrari F430 1m29.346s + 4.800s 16. GT2 Paolo Ruberti Ferrari F430 1m29.534s + 4.988s 17. GT2 Tim Mullen Ferrari F430 1m29.553s + 5.007s 18. GT2 Alvaro Barba Lopez Ferrari F430 1m29.799s + 5.253s 19. GT2 Mathias Russo Ferrari F430 1m29.836s + 5.290s 20. GT2 Stefan Mucke Aston Martin V8 1m29.916s + 5.370s 21. GT2 Emmanuel Collard Porsche 911 GT3 1m30.102s + 5.556s 22. GT2 Kenneth Heyer Ferrari F430 1m31.536s + 6.990s 
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Author Gary Watkins
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