Jean-Karl Vernay takes dominant Singapore pole position
Jean-Karl Vernay took pole position for Leopard Racing by a shocking half a second in Singapore. The Frenchman will start ahead of WestCoast Racing’s Gianni Morbidelli, who improved his time at the last minute to demote B3 Racing’s Mat’o Homola to third.
Stefano Comini will line up fourth for tonight’s race, with the Leopard Racing driver therefore scoring a point more than title rival Pepe Oriola, who qualified in fifth. The Craft-Bamboo driver will share the third row with fellow SEAT driver Dusan Borkovic in the B3 Racing León.
Championship leader James Nash will start seventh in the Craft-Bamboo SEAT alongside B3 Racing’s Attila Tassi, while Sergey Afanasyev and Kevin Gleason completed the top ten and will form the front row of the second race of the weekend on Sunday, with the WestCoast Racing driver taking pole position on his return to the TCR International Series.
Mikhail Grachev, who had hoped to return to a better form after a tough weekend in Thailand, just missed out on the reversed grid pole position and will start both races from 11th in his WestCoast Racing Honda Civic. Petr Fulín was a distant 12th, the Czech driver having struggled with electrical issues on his Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR during practice.
Jordi Oriola was over three seconds off the pace in the Kissling Motorsport-run Opel Astra TCR, which returns to the International Series after having enjoyed success in TCR Benelux. The German car was hit by a new wave of balance of performance measures ahead of the weekend.
The new Ford Focus TCR, developed by FRD Racing, also struggled. Martin Cao will start both races from 17th, the Chinese driver just over five seconds off the pace. Loris Hezemans set no timed lap in the Target Competition SEAT due to a broken driveshaft.
The first race will take place tonight at 19:25 local time.