Marco Wittmann made the best of damp, but drying conditions at Brands Hatch this morning to claim his fourth DTM pole position of 2019.
The twice-champion jumped to the top of the standings late in a disrupted session, heading Audi’s Rene Rast and Loïc Duval.
Before drying out, Jake Dennis led the standings for a time, but he fell down the order as the BMW and Audi runners settled into slick running. Initially Rast took control, setting laps over a second ahead of the pack, with only Duval and fellow Audi racer Robin Frijns getting close.
Then with only ten seconds left on the clock, Wittmann set the marker, putting his BMW M4 beyond his Audi rivals – his best of 1:15.654 taking his seven-hundredths adrift of Rast. Wittmann had enough time for one more lap, but could not improve, whereas those chasing began to filter back to the pits, having completed their respective runs.
Rast maintained his front row start at least, with Duval taking 3rd, albeit it three-tenths off of his Audi stablemate.
Paul di Resta end the session the best of the R-Motorsport Aston’s, with the Scot assuming 4th place, just a few hundredths shy of Duval.
Frijns scored 5th place, sharing the 3rd row with BMW DTM rookie Sheldon van der Linde. Dennis fell to 7th, just heading championship challenger Nico Müller and BMW stalwart Timo Glock, the latter of which was lucky to escape an off in the gravel at the beginning of the session. Dani Juncadella rounded out the top ten, having run as high as 4th at the halfway point of the session.
Philipp Eng secured the sixth row alongside Mike Rockenfeller, while Jamie Green will take row seven alongside Bruno Spengler, the latter of whom missed the early portion of the session due to a technical issue in the pits.
Joel Ericsson (15th), Ferdinand Habsburg (16th) will line up on row eight, while the final row of the grid is made of two drivers whose session ended very early. In 17th, Pietro Fittipaldi ran wide at Paddock Hill Bend, going hard into barrier backward, while Jonathan Aberdein ended the session last having gone off and nosing into the barrier at Clark Curve.