Sean Edwards tackles sweltering race from pole positionStuttgart. Competing for the Allyouneed by Project 1 team, Britain’s Sean Edwards heads into round five of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup at the Hungaroring on Sunday from pole position in temperatures expected to reach almost 40 degrees Celsius. At the wheel of his new 460 hp Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, which is based on the seventh generation of the 911, he was 0.103 seconds faster in qualifying than last year’s victor Christian Engelhart (FACH AUTO TECH) from Germany. This marks the third time that Sean Edwards, the winner of the season-opening races in Barcelona and Monaco, takes off into the race from the best grid position.
Securing the third fastest qualifying time, Supercup rookie Richie Stanaway from New Zealand secured a spot on the second grid row – the best qualifying result for the DAMS driver so far this season. After initially topping the time sheets for quite some time, Kuba Giermaziak (VERVA Racing Team) eventually finished up on fourth. In 2011, the Pole celebrated his first Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup victory in Budapest. Locking out the third grid row are the Attempto Racing teammates Nicki Thiim (Denmark), the Silverstone winner, and Kévin Estre (France). Porsche Junior Michael Christensen (Denmark), who recently clinched his first Supercup win on the Nürburgring, turned the eighth quickest time at his debut on the challenging Hungaroring circuit behind Germany’s Michael Ammermüller (Lechner Racing Team).
In the hotly-contested qualifying, at which like on the Nürburgring the first 15 pilots were within just one second, Porsche Junior Klaus Bachler could initially hold his own in the top group. The Austrian, who celebrates his 22nd birthday today, planted his FÖRCH Racing Porsche on second for a long time, but ultimately had to settle for tenth. Ahead of him, New Zealander Earl Bamber (FACH AUTO TECH) posted the ninth fastest time at his maiden qualifying session in the Supercup. The Frenchman Jean-Karl Vernay (MRS GT-Racing), who receives support from Porsche as the winner of the International Cup Scholarship for his Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup campaign this season, landed on 17th.
Sean Edwards (pole-sitter): “The pole is exactly what we had planned today. I experienced problems with my first set of tyres and afterwards it went much smoother. This track and these temperatures are brutal on the tyres. Since my strongest rival in the championship is starting from further back tomorrow, a win would give us a little more headway.”
Christian Engelhart (2nd qualifier): “I started from second on the grid last year in Budapest and won. I hope I can do that again tomorrow. The qualifying proved very difficult for us initially, the car wasn’t running well, but then we made the right decisions for our second run. The car ran perfectly.”
Richie Stanaway (3rd qualifier): “That was my best qualifying this season. I’m thrilled, even if I could have possibly done a little better in places. But now we’re focussing on the race. I’ll do everything I can to defend this position in the first laps and then surely anything is possible. Let’s see.”
Michael Christensen (Porsche Junior, 8th qualifier): “That was not a perfect qualifying. We had problems with the first set of tyres and later tried to change a few things. Unfortunately it didn’t really help.”
Klaus Bachler (Porsche Junior, 10th qualifier): “With the first set of tyres I drove the second fastest time which would of course have been a wonderful birthday present. When I went out on the second set towards the end I hit a caution phase for two laps. That was somewhat unlucky but there is nothing I can do about it. Now we just have to make the most out of the race.”
Jean-Karl Vernay (Winner International Cup Scholarship, 17th qualifier): “That was disappointing. I don’t understand why we’re so far down the field. We can only continue to work hard and hope that we find a solution to our problems.”
The race on Sunday is shown live by TV stations Eurosport (11.45 hrs) and Sky (11.40 hrs). Eurosport broadcasts highlights on Sunday at 22.30 hrs in the programme “Motorsport Weekend Magazin”.
1. Sean Edwards (GB), Team Allyouneed by Project 1, 1:48.356 minutes
2. Christian Engelhart (D), FACH AUTO TECH, + 0.103 seconds
3. Richie Stanaway (NZ), DAMS, + 0.165
4. Kuba Giermaziak (PL), VERVA Racing Team, + 0.288
5. Nicki Thiim (DK), Attempto Racing, + 0.310
6. Kévin Estre (F), Attempto Racing, + 0.502
8. Michael Christensen (DK), DAMS, + 0.673
10. Klaus Bachler (A), FÖRCH Racing, + 0.692
17. Jean-Karl Vernay (F), MRS GT-Racing, + 1.193
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SOURCE: Porsche Motorsports Press Release Database