Paul Ricard - france

Maserati gets first row at Paul Ricard

Tomorrow Alex Müller and Miguel Ramos will roar off from pole position in the seventh round of the FIA GT Championship, held at the Paul Ricard circuit in France.

The Maserati MC12 n° 2 duo will be side by side with the Italians Pier Guidi/Bobbi, who are driving Vitaphone Racing/DHL's MC12, while behind them, Andrea Bertolini and Michael Bartels will start off from third spot with the other Maserati MC12.

Qualifying second in the timed practices (2:01.856), Alex Müller benefitted from the fact that Enrique Bernoldi was relegated by five positions, a decision made by race officials to penalize the Brazilian driver for making contact with Alessandro Pier Guidi's car during the prequalifying practices yesterday. For the fourth time this season, the German driver will start in front of everyone else.

Alessandro Pier Guidi's time (2:02.043) was very good, especially after the trouble he had during the free practices. The driver from Tortona beat Andrea Bertolini (2:02:044) by a single millisecond. Bertolini must deal with 95 kg of ballast. The reigning champion's performance will enable him and Bartels to start off two positions in front of Kumpen/Hezemans, their rivals for the title.

Despite their excellent performance during the qualifying practices, there is still caution regarding the outcome of tomorrow's race (start off at 2:15 pm), considering the nature of the French racetrack, which favors engine power, thus cars with larger restrictor plates.