WTCR Vila Real: Huff secures pole in heavily disrupted qualifying

Rob Huff secured his second qualifying pole position of the 2018 World Touring Car Cup season in a heavily-interrupted first qualifying in Vila Real, heading a Sebastien Loeb Racing 1-2

WTCR Vila Real: Huff secures pole in heavily disrupted qualifying

Inbetween four red flag stoppages, Huff recorded a best time of 2m00.924s to beat team-mate Mehdi Bennani to pole by 0.027 seconds.

Huff had been quickest after the first two red flags with a best time of 2m01s in his SLR Volkswagen Golf GTi, but was able to shave a further seven hundredths off his time with a fastest second sector of all.

The Briton then went quicker still at the start of his first flying lap after a third red flag period had ended with the fastest time of all in the first sector, but was prevented an opportunity to improve when Jean-Karl Vernay put his WRT Audi RS3 LMS in the wall.

Officials finally declared the session would not restart after that incident, with two minutes left on the clock.

Norbert Michelisz was the fastest Hyundai driver and will start Saturday's first race from third in his BRC i30 N, ahead of championship leader Yann Ehrlacher (Munnich Motorsport Honda Civic).

Ehrlacher had one of his earlier efforts removed for improving fractionally after the second red flag had been shown, but improved later on to dislodge practice pacesetter Thed Bjork from fourth.

Bjork was the first driver to set a representative time in the session, but ended up qualifying more than half a second slower than he had gone in practice in his YMR Hyundai.

The 2017 World Touring Car champion will share the third row with team-mate Yvan Muller, who hit the barrier exiting the second chicane just before the session's first red flag.

John Filippi was seventh in his Campos Racing Cupra ahead of Ehrlacher's Munnich team-mate Esteban Guerrieri, Gabriele Tarquini (BRC Hyundai) and Vernay.

Gianni Morbidelli caused the second red flag when he hit the barrier exiting the second chicane in his Alfa Romeo Giulietta and will start 24th.

Wildcard entrants Edgar Florindo and Jose Rodrigues will start from 26th and 27th respectively, the latter failing to set a time in his older-generation Honda Civic.

Result

Pos Driver Team Car Gap
1 Rob Huff Sebastien Loeb Racing Volkswagen 2m00.924s
2 Mehdi Bennani Sebastien Loeb Racing Volkswagen 0.027s
3 Norbert Michelisz BRC Racing Team Hyundai 0.356s
4 Yann Ehrlacher Munnich Motorsport Honda 0.521s
5 Thed Bjork YMR Hyundai 0.759s
6 Yvan Muller YMR Hyundai 0.841s
7 John Filippi Campos Racing Cupra 1.151s
8 Esteban Guerrieri Munnich Motorsport Honda 1.185s
9 Gabriele Tarquini BRC Racing Team Hyundai 1.244s
10 Jean-Karl Vernay WRT Audi 1.433s
11 James Thompson Munnich Motorsport Honda 1.616s
12 Zsolt Szabo Zengo Motorsport Cupra 1.668s
13 Pepe Oriola Campos Racing Cupra 1.818s
14 Benjamin Lessennes Boutsen Ginion Racing Honda 1.958s
15 Aurelien Comte DG Sport Competition Peugeot 2.018s
16 Tom Coronel Boutsen Ginion Racing Honda 2.287s
17 Nathanael Berthon Comtoyou Racing Audi 2.299s
18 Gordon Shedden WRT Audi 2.409s
19 Frederic Vervisch Comtoyou Racing Audi 2.466s
20 Fabrizio Giovanardi Team Mulsanne Alfa Romeo 2.488s
21 Aurelien Panis Comtoyou Racing Audi 2.545s
22 Mat'o Homola DG Sport Competition Peugeot 2.555s
23 Norbert Nagy Zengo Motorsport Cupra 2.786s
24 Gianni Morbidelli Team Mulsanne Alfa Romeo 3.034s
25 Denis Dupont Comtoyou Racing Audi 3.526s
26 Edgar Florindo Veloso Motorsport Cupra 4.538s
27 Jose Rodrigues Target Competition Honda -

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