Tarquini Claims Istanbul Pole

Gabriele Tarquini claimed pole position for the eighth round of the World Touring Car Championship at Istanbul tomorrow despite missing half of the only qualifying session

Tarquini Claims Istanbul Pole

The former British Touring Car Champion set a time of 1:04.525 on his first set of tyres after sitting in the pits for 15 minutes while an oil leak on his Alfa Romeo car was fixed.

This lap put him half a second clear of the rest of the field, but teammate James Thompson closed to within one tenth of a second just before the end of the session.

Tarquini said: "This track seems really good for our car. The set up we started with worked straight away and we have continued to improve the car."

Tarquini and Thompson headed an Alfa block-out of the top four positions on the grid. Augusto Farfus Jr claimed third place, ahead of Fabrizio Giovanardi, who with 45kg of lead on board is carrying the most success ballast of the Italian marque's drivers.

Stephane Ortelli will line up fifth on the grid for the first of tomorrow's two 10-lap WTCC races. His ORECA-run SEAT Toledo Cupra R headed the works-entered car of Peter Terting by two tenths of a second.

Andy Priaulx ended up as the fastest BMW driver in seventh place on the grid, despite carrying the maximum 60kg of ballast.

Pos Driver Make Time Laps 1. Gabriele Tarquini Alfa Romeo 156 2:04.525 6 2. James Thompson Alfa Romeo 156 2:04.584 + 0.059 9 3. Augusto Farfus Jr. Alfa Romeo 156 2:04.744 + 0.219 8 4. Fabrizio Giovanardi Alfa Romeo 156 2:05.028 + 0.503 10 5. Stephane Ortelli SEAT Toledo Cupra 2:05.118 + 0.593 9 6. Peter Terting SEAT Toledo Cupra 2:05.334 + 0.809 9 7. Andy Priaulx BMW 320i 2:05.363 + 0.838 10 8. Jordi Gene SEAT Leon 2:05.378 + 0.853 6 9. Rickard Rydell SEAT Toledo Cupra 2:05.574 + 1.049 9 10. Dirk Muller BMW 320i 2:05.638 + 1.113 11 11. Adriano De Micheli Honda Accord Euro R 2:05.644 + 1.119 11 12. Nicola Larini Chevrolet Lacetti 2:05.670 + 1.145 10 13. Antonio Garcia BMW 320i 2:05.684 + 1.159 8 14. Alain Menu Chevrolet Lacetti 2:06.114 + 1.589 10 15. Alessandro Zanardi BMW 320i 2:06.259 + 1.734 9 16. Carl Rosenblad BMW 320i 2:06.326 + 1.801 11 17. Marc Hennerici BMW 320i 2:06.552 + 2.027 10 18. Michael Funke Ford Focus 2:06.665 + 2.140 8 19. Thomas Klenke Ford Focus 2:06.720 + 2.195 11 20. Stefano D'aste BMW 320i 2:06.731 + 2.206 11 21. Tom Coronel SEAT Toledo Cupra 2:06.743 + 2.218 9 22. Giuseppe Ciro BMW 320i 2:06.793 + 2.268 9 23. Erkut Kizilirmak SEAT Toledo Cupra 2:08.737 + 4.212 10 
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