Fabrizio Giovanardi believes he could have gone much faster in British Touring Car qualifying at Thruxton, despite taking his first pole position for two years.
The double champion, who scored only the second pole of his BTCC career, out-paced his Vauxhall team-mate Matt Neal by 0.320 seconds, but despite producing a blistering time on his only flying lap of the session, said he was "being careful."
"Matt was only three tenths off and he has maximum ballast, I have none," Giovanard told AUTOSPORT. "I could have gone faster, I think. My lap was quite a careful one because I was not completely on the limit.
"I didn't make any changes to the set-up after practice, I just wanted to do one clean lap and see what was needed afterwards. The car was just perfect, so I didn't need to go out again."
Giovanardi was quick to praise the Vauxhall mechanics, who repaired his car after a collision with Stephen Jelley's WSR BMW during the second practice session that damaged his Vectra heavily on the right-hand side.
"The car was great, really fast, really perfect," he added. "So I must say thank you to my guys. I believe in them and after Vauxhall has decided to stop, they did a great job to keep the heads up and make a great job.
"There was a lot of damage to the suspension and the bodywork, but it was completely fixed for qualifying. I couldn't feel any damage when I was in the car."