Bathgate’s Paul Di Resta will start one place ahead of Audi’s Timo Scheider, the man he must beat in tomorrow’s German Touring Car Championship finale at Hockenheim if he is to be crowned champion.
But the 22-year-old Scot had to content himself with second on the grid after narrowly missing out on pole position by four-hundredths of a second after clocking 1min 32.284secs in his Mercedes, 0.208s quicker than third-placed Scheider.
The Audi driver will immediately come under intense pressure as the three Mercedes of Jamie Green, Bernd Schneider and Bernd Schneider — all of whom have pledged to help Di Resta — line up immediately behind him on the grid.
“It was always going to be very tight this weekend, and though I’m obviously pleased to be starting in front of Timo, I’d rather have been on pole than second,” Di Resta, who was pipped to pole position by reigning champion, Mattias Ekstrom in another Audi.
“Mattias did a better lap than me. It’s as simple as that. But we’ve shown over the last four or five races that we have an excellent race car and as long as we all do what we’re meant to do tomorrow, then I have a terrific chance of the championship.”
Di Resta, who has finished second in three of the last four races — the other he won at Barcelona — is the man on form and starts the 60-minute race just two points adrift of Scheider.
Victory in the race would be enough to see the talented young Scot, tipped to graduate to Formula One was part of new alliance between McLaren-Mercedes and Force India, clinch the title.