Honda Racing drivers Esteban Guerrieri and Nestor Girolami secured strong starting positions for the two WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup races at Most in qualifying on Friday evening.
Esteban took his ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport Honda Civic Type R TCR to top spot in Q1, with Nestor also advancing with the fourth-best time.
The two sat either side of the top-five cut-off for a place in the Q3 shootout after their first Q2 runs, but as Esteban opted to go for a second run and improved to fourth, his team-mate ‘Bebu’ chose to back out of his lap and ended up ninth.
After another strong effort on his shootout run, Esteban ended up with the fourth-fastest time and was within five hundredths of a place on the front row.
Though he received a penalty for an infraction in Q1, for which he will drop two positions on the grid in Race One, it does not affect either the seven points he accumulated in Q1 and Q3 or his starting position for Race Two.
Nestor meanwhile was rewarded for his decision not to go for a second lap, as ninth in Q2 gave him a place on the front row for the partially reversed grid race that will kick Sunday’s action off.
What’s more, the Argentinian – who also scored two bonus points in Q1 – will be the highest-starting of those eligible to score points at Most this weekend, as he lines up second behind a wildcard entrant.
There was less fortune for the ALL-INKL.DE Münnich Motorsport Civic Type R TCRs of Tiago Monteiro and Attila Tassi, who were both caught on just the wrong side of an ultra-tight fight to make the top 12 in Q1.
Tiago’s car underwent a gearbox change following FP2 after a problem while upshifting was discovered. Despite the problem not being completely solved by the time qualifying began, he still got within one tenth of a place in Q2 in 16th.
Attila might well have progressed to the second session but for a small mistake on his second Q1 run, which consigned him to 17th, just behind his team-mate. His best lap was set in the early part of the session prior to a red flag.
Following a hectic Friday, the drivers and both Münnich Motorsport teams will have a day off from track activity on Saturday, when the FIM Endurance World Championship takes to the circuit. Both WTCR races will be held on Sunday.