WTCR Marrakech: Tarquini leads Muller in an all-Hyundai front row

Saturday race winner Gabriele Tarquini grabbed pole position for the final race of the inaugural World Touring Car Cup weekend with the fastest time in qualifying on Sunday morning

WTCR Marrakech: Tarquini leads Muller in an all-Hyundai front row

Tarquini set the fastest time of the weekend so far in the shootout section of qualifying, recording a 1m24.316s lap of the Moulay El Hassan circuit in Marrakech in his Hyundai i30 N to beat the similar YMR car of Yvan Muller to pole.

BRC Racing driver Tarquini had trailed Muller through the first two sectors on his shootout effort, but pulled out the fastest final sector time and jumped the Frenchman by 0.080 seconds.

A slight mistake from Tarquini's team-mate Norbert Michelisz in the first sector of his flying lap cost him two tenths to Muller's previous best time time and, though he clawed back ground in the middle sector, he ended up 0.224s away from pole and will line-up third.

Thed Bjork had been fastest in the second part of qualifying in his YMR Hyundai, but was always playing catch up on his run and ended up 0.337s adrift.

Munnich Motorsport Honda Civic driver Yann Ehrlacher was the only non-Hyundai to make it through to the final part of qualifying, and will start Sunday's final race from fifth.

Fastest of those knocked out in Q2 was Rob Huff in his Sebastien Loeb Racing Golf GTi, with Ehrlacher's final effort in second qualifying beating the Briton's best by a mere 0.005s.

The second Golf of Mehdi Bennani was seventh ahead of James Thompson (pictured above), who was an impressive eighth in his Munnich Motorsport Honda and will start Sunday's reversed-grid race from third.

He will line up behind the WRT Audi RS3 LMS of Jean-Karl Vernay and polesitter Pepe Oriola on the race two grid, after the pair qualified ninth and 10th respectively.

Gordon Shedden briefly sat in 10th after his final flying lap in the session, but was bumped down by an improvement from the Cupra of Oriola.

Shedden had earlier squeaked through to the second part of qualifying in 12th at the expense of Esteban Guerrieri, who was the only one of the Munnich Motorsport drivers to miss the cut.

The pair were both sat in the drop zone when Q1 resumed following a lengthy stoppage to recover Denis Dupont's Comtoyou Audi from the barriers at Turn 1, but Shedden ultimately got the nod by 0.022s over Guerrieri.

Argentinian Guerrieri will start race two from 12th, though, with Frederic Vervisch dropping five spots from his 12th place qualifying position for his part in an accident at the start of Saturday's first race.

Neither of the Peugeots made it through the first part of qualifying, with Mato Homola 16th after sliding into the barrier on the outside of the Turn 4/5 chicane during the session and Aurelien Comte two places further behind.

Alfa Romeo pair Fabrizio Giovanardi and Gianni Morbidelli struggled once again and will start both of Sunday's races from 23rd and 25th respectively.

Race two starting grid

Pos Driver Team Car
1 Pepe Oriola Campos Racing Cupra
2 Jean-Karl Vernay WRT Audi
3 James Thompson Munnich Motorsport Honda
4 Mehdi Bennani Sebastien Loeb Racing Volkswagen
5 Rob Huff Sebastien Loeb Racing Volkswagen
6 Yann Ehrlacher Munnich Motorsport Honda
7 Thed Bjork YMR Hyundai
8 Norbert Michelisz BRC Racing Team Hyundai
9 Yvan Muller YMR Hyundai
10 Gabriele Tarquini BRC Racing Team Hyundai
11 Gordon Shedden WRT Audi
12 Esteban Guerrieri Munnich Motorsport Honda
13 Tom Coronel Boutsen Ginion Racing Honda
14 John Filippi Campos Racing Cupra
15 Mat'o Homola DG Sport Competition Peugeot
16 Benjamin Lessennes Boutsen Ginion Racing Honda
17 Frederic Vervisch Comtoyou Racing Audi
18 Aurelien Comte DG Sport Competition Peugeot
19 Zsolt Szabo Zengo Motorsport Cupra
20 Nathanael Berthon Comtoyou Racing Audi
21 Norbert Nagy Zengo Motorsport Cupra
22 Fabrizio Giovanardi Team Mulsanne Alfa Romeo
23 Aurelien Panis Comtoyou Racing Audi
24 Gianni Morbidelli Team Mulsanne Alfa Romeo
1001 Denis Dupont Comtoyou Racing Audi

Race three starting grid

Pos Driver Team Car
1 Gabriele Tarquini BRC Racing Team Hyundai
2 Yvan Muller YMR Hyundai
3 Norbert Michelisz BRC Racing Team Hyundai
4 Thed Bjork YMR Hyundai
5 Yann Ehrlacher Munnich Motorsport Honda
6 Rob Huff Sebastien Loeb Racing Volkswagen
7 Mehdi Bennani Sebastien Loeb Racing Volkswagen
8 James Thompson Munnich Motorsport Honda
9 Jean-Karl Vernay WRT Audi
10 Pepe Oriola Campos Racing Cupra
11 Gordon Shedden WRT Audi
12 Frederic Vervisch Comtoyou Racing Audi
13 Esteban Guerrieri Munnich Motorsport Honda
14 Tom Coronel Boutsen Ginion Racing Honda
15 John Filippi Campos Racing Cupra
16 Mat'o Homola DG Sport Competition Peugeot
17 Benjamin Lessennes Boutsen Ginion Racing Honda
18 Aurelien Comte DG Sport Competition Peugeot
19 Zsolt Szabo Zengo Motorsport Cupra
20 Nathanael Berthon Comtoyou Racing Audi
21 Norbert Nagy Zengo Motorsport Cupra
22 Fabrizio Giovanardi Team Mulsanne Alfa Romeo
23 Aurelien Panis Comtoyou Racing Audi
24 Gianni Morbidelli Team Mulsanne Alfa Romeo
1001 Denis Dupont Comtoyou Racing Audi

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Series WTCR
Drivers Yvan Muller , Gabriele Tarquini
Author Jack Cozens
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