Al Faisal qualifies in sixth at Hungaroring

MOGYOROD, Hungary: Oman’s Al Faisal al Zubair qualified in an impressive sixth place, as Porsche Mobil 1 Super Cup drivers entertained the lunchtime crowds at the Hungaroring in Hungary on Saturday.
The BWT Lechner Racing Team driver ran a best lap of 1min 48.241sec to finish a tight 30-minute qualifying session just 0.461 seconds behind pole winner Tio Ellinas of Cyprus.
But Ellinas was later demoted to fourth by race officials and Al Zubair’s BWT Lechner Racing Team colleagues and title rivals Julien Andlauer and Michael Ammermuller were awarded pole and second positions on the grid.
Al Zubair said: “It was a very good qualifying session. P7, but we will start the race from P6 because one of the guys got his fastest lap under a yellow.
“P6 and that is five out of the top six as Lechner cars. It is Walter’s (Lechner) birthday on Sunday, so it would be great to get a good result. My hope is to finish the race in the top five or six. That would be great.”
The qualifying session always takes on extra significance because of the nature of the Hungarian circuit with overtaking notoriously difficult during a race.
Ellinas hit the top of the timings with a first fast lap of 1min 48.619sec and was followed by Mikkel Pedersen and Larry Ten Voorde in dry track conditions. Al Zubair opened his account with a 1min 52.146sec run and that put him down in 13th place.
Ammermuller then stormed to the top of the standings with a second full lap of 1min 47.998sec, as Turkey’s Ayhancan Guven and series leader Andlauer filled second and third places and Al Zubair climbed to seventh with a lap of 1min 48.735sec.
A storming lap of 1min 48.636sec lifted Al Zubair into fifth place on his third timed lap, but Ammermuller continued to lead from Guven and Andlauer.
Seventh-placed Florian Latorre was the first of the top 10 to return to action with 16 minutes of the session to run, but the Frenchman couldn’t take advantage of an empty track and he retained seventh place, as Joey Mawson and Ten Voorde were the first of his main rivals to leave the pits with a little over eight minutes remaining.
As qualifying action resumed in earnest over the final minutes, Andlauer hit the front with a 1min 47.847sec run and Al Zubair climbed to fourth with a 1min 48.241sec, as Ellinas snatched third behind Ammermuller.
With two minutes left on the clock, Pereira displaced Al Zubair with a 1min 48.234sec run and Ellinas claimed provisional pole with a 1min 47.780sec tour. Mawson also moved in front of Al Zubair, who slipped back to seventh after Ten Voorde carded a potent lap.
Ellinas had done enough to claim pole position from Andlauer and Ammermuller, with Al Zubair qualifying behind Ten Voorde, Mawson and Pereira in seventh place.
But the results were changed some time after the session finished and Andlauer was awarded pole from Ammermuller, Ten Voorde, Ellinas, Pereira and Al Zubair.