Andreas Wernersson scored his second career pole position in Scandinavian touring cars at the Skellefteå Drive Center at Fällfors, depriving local hero Robert Dahlgren of an almost expected pole position, after the PWR Racing Cupra driver had led every session of the day up until Qualifying 2.
Wernersson, driving the #4 Brink Motorsport Audi RS 3 LMS, was trailing behind Dahlgren after their first laps in the second part of qualifying by 0.079 seconds, but Wernersson was the only driver who opted to go for two runs in the ten-minute session, heading out one more time and then jumping ahead of Dahlgren by three-tenths of a second.
Up until that point, Dahlgren had led every session of the day in his PWR Racing – SEAT Dealer Team Cupra TCR. The Skellefteå Kraft-backed driver was over a second clear of the field in the first two practice sessions, but Wernersson was edging ever closer throughout the day, ultimately deposing the Cupra driver in the all-important qualifying session.
Qualifying third on the grid was Andreas Ahlberg in the lone Micke Kågered Racing Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR, while Hannes Morin was a season’s best fourth in his Brink Motorsport Audi, with the 16-year-old therefore securing his second reversed grid pole position of the season, having taken his first at the opening weekend at Knutstorp.
Troubles for both Tobias Brink in the #71 Audi RS 3 LMS, and Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky in her PWR Racing Cupra TCR, meant the two drivers qualified fifth and sixth respectively, just over two seconds off the pace.
Peter ‘Poker’ Wallenberg qualified in seventh and missed the Q2 cut, while Mattias Andersson had a disastrous day in the Honda Racing Sweden Civic TCR.
The Honda driver was third fastest in the first test session, before an engine failure put him out of running for the remainder of the day.
Andersson’s MA:GP team have sent two team members back to their based at Linköping, 1,000km away, in order to retrieve their spare engine in the hope of starting both of tomorrow’s races from the back of the grid.
Andreas Wernersson, #4 Brink Motorsport Audi RS 3 LMS, pole position, said:
“I thought that P2 was the best we could get today, but the mechanics did an amazing job all day. We’ve made small improvements in every session, and this last lap in Q2 was really good.
“I’m proud of myself and the team, and starting from first position tomorrow I will not give anything easily.
“Our strategy was always to do two runs – my first lap was really good and I was happy with that, but then I heard I was one-tenth from Robert. The team asked if I wanted to do a second run, and I said of course!
“It will be tough to hold Robert back, but we’ve improved the car a lot, and I’ll do everything I can to hold him back and hopefully we can win tomorrow and get some good points.”
Robert Dahlgren, #2 PWR Racing Cupra TCR, second on the grid, said:
“That didn’t even go close to plan. It was very strange. The lap I did was too safe. It was alright, but it was too safe, and we hadn’t calculated that we’d have time to do two shots.
“With the margin we’ve had today, we thought we’d play it a little bit safe and make sure we didn’t make any mistakes and do one shot, and then apparently we had time to do two – we thought we didn’t have time to go out again, but if you change tyres really fast, you have.
“We have very good pace, over laps as well not just over one qualifying lap and that feels good, but it’s still a bummer not to take pole after our pace today.”
All races will be streamed live on SBF’s website at https://sbfplay.solidtango.com and on the TCR Series TV hub at http://www.tcr-series.tv.
Live timing is available at: https://www.motorsport-events.se/livetimingpccs
Pos – Driver – Team – Car – Time/Gap
1 – Andreas Wernersson – Brink Motorsport – Audi RS 3 LMS – 1:53.464
2 – Robert Dahlgren – PWR Racing – Cupra TCR – 0.345
3 – Andreas Ahlberg – Micke Kågered Racing – Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR – 1.045
4 – Hannes Morin – Brink Motorsport – Audi RS 3 LMS – 1.380
5 – Tobias Brink – Brink Motorsport – Audi RS 3 LMS – 2.466
6 – Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky – PWR Racing – Cupra TCR – 2.538
7 – Peter ‘Poker’ Wallenberg – Poker Racing For Charity – Cupra TCR – 4.344
8 – Mattias Andersson – Honda Racing Sweden – Honda Civic Type R FK2 TCR – No time