Tarquini claims pole at Porto

Gabriele Tarquini scored his second World Touring Car pole position of the season, getting the better of Rob Huff by less than a tenth of a second in today's qualifying session at Porto

Tarquini claims pole at Porto

Huff's Chevrolet had set the pace in the day's earlier practice session but SEAT's turbo diesel-powered Leons came to the fore in qualifying, first with championship leader Yvan Muller in Q1, then with Tarquini in the all-important Q2.

Tarquini lay ahead of Huff and Muller after the first runs in the 15-minute shootout, and the Italian had to rely on that time after he overshot one of the Portuguese street circuit's 90-degree left handers and had to abort his second flying lap.

Fortunately for the Italian, Huff and Menu were unable to better their times on their final runs due to traffic and yellow flags.

"I am very pleased to be on pole again," said Tarquini. "But statisically when I am on pole position I've never won, so I must crack this statistic."

Andy Priaulx was the best of the BMWs and will start fourth tomorrow. He too was unable to improve on his second run after finishing a couple of tenths shy of the front on his first.

Alain Menu will share the third row of the grid with local driver Tiago Monteiro, who was one of only two drivers to improve his time on his second run in Q2 to climb from 10th to sixth. The other was Augusto Farfus, who will line up behind Monteiro in seventh despite clipping the wall in the chicane on the back straight on his best lap.

The third Chevrolet of Nicola Larini will start eighth, while Rickard Rydell and Jordi Gene will fill the fifth row for SEAT after both made mistakes on their laps.

The BMWs of Alex Zanardi and Jorg Muller just missed making Q2 and will start 11th and 12th, while the competitiveness of all three manufacturer teams at Porto meant that the top independent driver qualified just 13th overall. That was Tom Coronel, who will start 13th with class rivals Stefano D'Aste, Felix Porteiro and Mehdi Bennani queued up behind him.

James Thompson qualified the new Lada Priora in 22nd place, four places and 1.8 seconds behind Jaap van Lagen's Lada 110.

Pos Driver Car Q1 Q2 1. Gabriele Tarquini SEAT 2m09.471s 2m09.308s 2. Rob Huff Chevrolet 2m09.601s 2m09.395s 3. Yvan Muller SEAT 2m09.361s 2m09.493s 4. Andy Priaulx BMW 2m09.676s 2m09.563s 5. Alain Menu Chevrolet 2m09.856s 2m09.670s 6. Tiago Monteiro SEAT 2m09.892s 2m09.679s 7. Augusto Farfus BMW 2m09.928s 2m09.786s 8. Nicola Larini Chevrolet 2m09.797s 2m09.859s 9. Rickard Rydell SEAT 2m09.967s 2m10.089s 10. Jordi Gene SEAT 2m09.910s 2m10.448s 11. Alex Zanardi BMW 2m10.430s 12. Jorg Muller BMW 2m10.576s 13. Tom Coronel SEAT 2m11.330s 14. Stefano D'Aste BMW 2m11.505s 15. Felix Porteiro BMW 2m11.887s 16. Mehdi Bennani SEAT 2m11.964s 17. Sergio Hernandez BMW 2m12.007s 18. Jaap van Lagen Lada 2m12.058s 19. Franz Engstler BMW 2m12.146s 20. Kristian Poulsen BMW 2m13.271s 21. Tom Boardman SEAT 2m13.696s 22. James Thompson Lada 2m13.819s 23. Kirill Ladygin Lada 2m13.831s 24. Diego Puyo SEAT 2m13.976s 
Huff flies in final Porto practice
Previous article

Huff flies in final Porto practice

Next article

Tarquini eases to victory at Porto

Tarquini eases to victory at Porto
Load comments
Why joker laps are entering the mainstream Plus

Why joker laps are entering the mainstream

This season the World Touring Car Championship looks certain to bring joker laps to a circuit-racing world championship for the first time. And it need not be the daft gimmick people may think

Apr 6, 2017
The making of the world's best tin-top driver Plus

The making of the world's best tin-top driver

He has been overshadowed at Citroen for the last three seasons, but the retirement of Yvan Muller means the world says farewell to one of touring-car racing's finest talents

Sep 26, 2016
Volvo's plan to conquer the WTCC Plus

Volvo's plan to conquer the WTCC

Volvo gave the World Touring Car Championship a major boost when it announced it would enter the series, but its ambitions don't stop there. JACK COZENS examines its programme, the S60 and what its arrival means for the WTCC

Jan 18, 2016
The WTCC's Nordschleife gamble paid off Plus

The WTCC's Nordschleife gamble paid off

A 17-car field on a 13-mile track - the WTCC's Nurburgring Nordschleife gamble wasn't going to be easy to pull off. STUART CODLING explains how the series made it work

May 20, 2015
Insight from a Nordschleife master Plus

Insight from a Nordschleife master

World championship racing returns to the Nordschleife this weekend. STUART CODLING got a lesson from one of the legendary track's few masters

May 15, 2015
Becoming world champion for £100k Plus

Becoming world champion for £100k

The 2012 World Touring Car champion says he never had the money to race cars. Yet 2015 is his 11th season in the WTCC. He talks STUART CODLING through his journey from motorsport fan to paid professional - for little more than £100,000

Mar 23, 2015
Can the vanquished champion bounce back? Plus

Can the vanquished champion bounce back?

The World Touring Car Championship kicks off in Argentina this weekend, and Yvan Muller bids to reclaim his throne from Citroen team-mate Jose Maria Lopez. He talks to STUART CODLING

Mar 6, 2015
The top 10 WTCC drivers of 2014 Plus

The top 10 WTCC drivers of 2014

Citroen had no rivals during the 2014 World Touring Car Championship, and 'rookie' Jose Maria Lopez hit the ground running to emerge as a worthy champion. PETER MILLS rates the field

Dec 3, 2014