Photo: ACI Sport

Cesar Machado wins intense fight for Vallelunga pole position

Target Competition’s Cesar Machado kept up his strong form from yesterday’s free practice to take pole position in his Honda Civic TCR, despite driving the older-spec version of the Japanese car. The Portuguese driver will share the front row with TCR Italy rookie Kevin Ceccon, who lost out on his maiden pole position by a mere 0.027s in the Romeo Ferraris-built Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR.

Eric Scalvini was also very close to the duo, his Hyundai i30 N TCR lapping 6 hundredths slower than the pole sitter. Championship contender Luigi Ferrara was fourth in his V-Action Giulietta, just ahead of championship leader Salvatore Tavano, who will line up fifth in his Cupra.

Enrico Bettera will start sixth in his Audi RS 3 LMS, ahead of former team-mate Nicola Baldan in the M1RA Hyundai, who is on track despite not having perfectly recovered from his accident in Imola in which he had a broken collarbone. Max Mugelli was eighth in his Honda Civic TCR, ahead of DSG Trophy pole sitter Giovanni Altoè. Federico Paolino completed the top ten in his BRC Racing Hyundai.

Matteo Greco, who is second in the points, went no further than 11th in his DSG-equipped Cupra. The session was stopped when Andrea Larini went off track at Esse right hander, the Tuscany-based driver finishing 20th after only completing one timed lap.

The first race of the weekend is scheduled for today at 15:10 CEST.