Clos takes maiden pole in Monaco
|By Mark Glendenning||Thursday, May 13th 2010, 15:04 GMT|
Dani Clos will start tomorrow's GP2 feature race in Monaco from pole position after coming out on top in a dramatic qualifying session this afternoon.
On a track that was drying out after a wet start to the session, the Racing Engineering driver produced a late lap of 1m37.572s to edge out Barwa Addax's Sergio Perez by just 0.033 seconds. It is the Spaniard's first GP2 pole, and comes just a week after he finished on the podium at Barcelona.
Ironically, Clos owed a lot to Rapax's Pastor Maldonado, who had led most of the session and had improved his time again with just 30 seconds remaining, only to immediately crash into the barriers at Ste Devote, bringing out the yellows and ensuring that no one behind him could improve their times.
However the flags were no guarantee that nobody else would make the same mistake as Maldonado, as iSport's Davide Valsecchi proved moments later by also going wide and skidding into the stricken Rapax car.
But both Clos and Perez were already on fast laps ahead of Maldonado at the time of his accident and were able to complete their runs to move ahead of the Venezuelan at the last moment, dropping him back to third on the grid alongside Coloni's Alberto Valerio.
It was a mixed afternoon for some of the other favourites, including Barcelona feature race winner Charles Pic, who will start from 18th for Arden, and iSport's Oliver Turvey, who will start from last after knocking off his front wing. The Briton will be joined on the back row by Trident's Johnny Cecotto, who had sideswiped the barriers earlier.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Dani Clos Racing Engineering 1m37.572s 2. Sergio Perez Barwa Addax 1m37.605s + 0.033s 3. Pastor Maldonado Rapax 1m38.512s + 0.940s 4. Alberto Valerio Coloni 1m38.901s + 1.329s 5. Fabio Leimer Ocean 1m39.072s + 1.500s 6. Jules Bianchi ART 1m39.146s + 1.574s 7. Davide Valsecchi iSport . 1m39.255s + 1.683s 8. Jerome D'Ambrosio DAMS 1m39.363s + 1.791s 9. Christian Vietoris Racing Engineering 1m39.413s + 1.841s 10. Luiz Razia Rapax 1m39.544s + 1.972s 11. Sam Bird ART 1m39.638s + 2.066s 12. Giedo van der Garde Barwa Addax 1m39.812s + 2.240s 13. Marcus Ericsson Super Nova 1m39.826s + 2.254s 14. Ho-Pin Tung DAMS 1m39.926s + 2.354s 15. Adrian Zaugg Trident 1m40.237s + 2.665s 16. Max Chilton Ocean 1m40.495s + 2.923s 17. Giacomo Ricci DPR 1m40.520s + 2.948s 18. Charles Pic Arden 1m40.767s + 3.195s 19. Rodolfo Gonzalez Arden 1m40.881s + 3.309s 20. Josef Kral Super Nova 1m40.973s + 3.401s 21. Vlado Arabadzhiev Coloni 1m41.733s + 4.161s 22. Michael Herck DAMS 1m42.039s + 4.467s 23. Johnny Cecotto Trident 1m43.090s + 5.518s 24. Oliver Turvey iSport 1m43.595s + 6.023s