Kuba Giermaziak put in a strong performance on the wet Spa-Francorchamps circuit to secure pole position for round eight of the Porsche Mobil1 Supercup. At the wheel of his 450 hp Porsche 911 GT3 Cup fielded by VERVA Racing, which is based on the lightweight 911 GT3 RS street sports car, the Budapest winner was 0.250 seconds faster than Supercup record-winner Patrick Huisman (Team Bleekemolen) from the Netherlands. The third grid spot went to points’ leader and last year’s Spa winner, Sean Edwards (Abu Dhabi by tolimit) from Great Britain.
Under the dark clouds hanging over the storied race track in the Ardennes, the qualifying took a surprising turn just three and a half minutes before the end of the session. Patrick Huisman, who celebrated the most recent of his 24 victories in the world’s fastest international one-make series at the 2007 Spa race, topped the time sheets. But the Dutchman, whose last pole position was in 2007 at Barcelona, had to settle for second on the grid. Kuba Giermaziak, the Nuerburgring pole-sitter, used the last chance before a caution phase to turn the quickest lap of the day.
More than one second adrift of the leading pair, Sean Edwards and his compatriot Nick Tandy (Konrad Motorsport) claimed the second grid row for themselves. Suffering radiator problems, Tandy could only manage one quick lap. Breathing down their necks are two strong rivals: Four-time winner this season, René Rast from Germany (VELTINS Lechner Racing), and the two-time Supercup champion Jeroen Bleekemolen (Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit) occupied positions five and six and take up the race from the third row. The seventh quickest time was achieved by Slovakia’s Stefan Rosina (VERVA Racing Team) ahead of Germany’s Christian Engelhart (Konrad Motorsport), the winner from the season-opening round in Istanbul. Rounding off the top ten of the grid are Sebastiaan Bleekemolen (Team Bleekemolen) from the Netherlands and Hermes Attempto Racing pilot and Supercup newcomer Kévin Estre from France, who surprisingly clinched pole position recently in Budapest.
Achieving 15th, Austria’s Mathias Lauda (Konrad Motorsport Austria), the son of racing legend Niki Lauda, made the most out of the very difficult weather conditions. His compatriot Norbert Siedler, currently ranking third in the championship, qualified just one position in front.
Kuba Giermaziak (pole-sitter): “A huge thank you to my team. They sent me out on the track at exactly the right moment. My lap wasn’t particularly great, but luckily good enough for pole. We’ve again shown that we know how it works in rain and so of course I’m hoping for a rainy race tomorrow. But don’t worry, we’ll be quick even in dry conditions. If you start from the first row here in Spa and you avoid any major mistakes, nothing can really go wrong.”
Patrick Huisman (second in qualifying): “I’m very pleased with second place. It was a good sign when it began to rain again before the session started because we were already fast on a wet track on Friday. At last I’m back on the front row. This is a great position to start the race.”
Sean Edwards (third in qualifying): “The yellow flag shortly before the end of the session ruined my chances of claiming pole position. That’s a great shame, but not the end of the world. On this track you can win from the second grid row. And that’s exactly what we will try to do.”
1. Kuba Giermaziak (PL), VERVA Racing Team, 2:42.533 minutes
2. Patrick Huisman (NL), Team Bleekemolen, + 0.250 seconds
3. Sean Edwards (GB), Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit, + 1.156
4. Nick Tandy (GB), Konrad Motorsport, + 1.240
5. René Rast (D), VELTINS Lechner Racing, + 1.312
6. Jeroen Bleekemolen (NL), Team Abu Dhabi by tolimit, + 1.430
The race on Sunday is broadcast live by TV stations Eurosport 2 (11.45 hrs) and Sky Sport 2 (11.40 hrs). Eurosport also televises highlights on Sunday at 23.30 hours in its “Motorsport Weekend Magazin” programme.
Source : Porsche Factory News