Darren Turner claimed pole position for the Young Driver AMR Aston Martin team at his home round of the FIA GT1 World Championship at Silverstone. The Aston Martin factory driver Turner leapfrogged Frederic Makowiecki in the timesheets to go fastest in the closing seconds of the third segment of the new championship's qualifying procedure. His time was 0.4sec quicker than Hexis Aston Martin driver Makowiecki.
Turner, whose teammate Tomas Enge will start this afternoon's qualifying race from pole position, said: "I'm very happy to be on pole after a lot of disappointment at Abu Dhabi [the opening round of the series]. It's nice to be at the sharp end of the grid."
The Aston Martin DBR9, which was given a 50kg weight break ahead of this event, topped the times in all three 10-minute qualifying sessions.
Stefan Mucke was fastest in Qualifying 1 in the second Young Driver car and Clivio Piccione did the best time in Qualifying 2 at the wheel of the second Hexis car.
Sumo Power Nissan driver Michael Krumm ended up third in the timesheets, just over two tenths behind Makowiecki. The German was three tenths ahead of Andrea Bertolini in the best of the Vitaphone Maseratis.
Oliver Gavin was second fastest in Qualifying 1 at the wheel of the SRT-run Mad Croc Chevrolet Corvette C6.R. His teammate, sextogenarian Pertti Kuismanen was unable to make it into the top eight in Qualifying 2, meaning the car failed to make it into the final session.
Also eliminated at this stage was the winner of the main event at Abu Dhabi, the Matech Ford GT driven by Romain Grosjean and Thomas Mutsch.
Grosjean was only 15th in the opening session and Mutsch was second slowest in Qualifying 2.
Those eliminated in the first round included multiple FIA GT Championship race-winner Karl Wendlinger in the Swiss Racing Team Nissan GT-R and All-Inkl Lamborghini driver Christophe Bouchut.
Pos Drivers Team/Car Time
1. Turner/Enge Young Driver Aston 1m58.81s
2. Makowiecki/Accary Hexis Aston Martin 1m59.29s
3. Krumm/Dumbreck SumoPower Nissan 1m59.50s
4. Bertolini/Bartels Vitaphone Maserati 1m59.78s
5. Hughes/Campbell-Walter SumoPower Nissan 2m00.46s
6. Piccione/Hirschi Hexis Aston Martin 2m00.57s
7. Menten/Kechele All-Inkl Lamborghini 2m00.64s
8. Kox/Haase Reiter Lamborghini 2m00.70s
9. Zuber/Hennerici Phoenix Corvette 2m00.22s
10. Nygaard/Mucke Young Driver Aston 2m00.34s
11. Hezemans/Kumpen Phoenix Corvette 2m00.64s
12. Bobbi/Longin Triple H Maserati 2m01.28s
13. Bernoldi/Ramos Vitaphone Maserati 2m01.37s
14. Margaritis/Heger Triple H Maserati 2m01.90s
15. Mutsch/Grosjean Matech Ford 2m02.11s
16. Gavin/Kuismanen MadCroc Corvette 2m02.29s
17. Bouchut/Basseng All-Inkl Lamborghini 2m01.16s
18. Leinders/Martin Marc VDS Ford 2m01.18s
19. Ara/Nilsson SRT Nissan 2m01.19s
20. Maassen/Armindo MadCroc Corvette 2m01.42s
21. Wendlinger/Moser SRT Nissan 2m01.51s
22. Palttala/Kuppens Marc VDS Ford 2m02.07s
23. Schwager/Pastorelli Reiter Lamborghini 2m02.93s