SC Corinthians will start the opening Superleague Formula by Sonangol race at Donington Park tomorrow from pole-position (2 Aug) after qualifying was abandoned due to a flooded track this afternoon.
The Brazilian clubs Antônio Pizzonia (BRA) headed the time trials in the opening Group A session staged on a dry track but rain midway through the session sent all cars in to the pits.
The following Group B qualifiers, now fitted with wet tyres as conditions quickly deteriorated, was headed by Olympiacos Davide Rigon (IT) the defending SLF champion and a winner of the corresponding Donington race last August.
Quarter-final 1 was held in heavy rain and poor visibility forcing the organisers to suspend then ultimately abandon the following time trials due to the dangerous conditions on the 2.5 miles (4.02 km) parkland track.
The 18-car grid will line-up for tomorrows opening 44min plus one lap race in the order cars achieved in the opening 15-minute, Group A and B time trials. The nine GpA cars will take the pole side of the grid behind Pizzonia with Rigon alongside on the front row heading the GpB runners down the other side.
Three British soccer clubs, Glasgow Rangers, Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur, plus two British drivers, Jonathan Kennard and Scott Mansell, aim for home rule at Donington the only British venue in the series.
The Rangers car of John Martin (AUS) starts from fifth place, Tottenham Hotspurs Craig Dolby who lives in nearby Leicestershire from sixth alongside on the third row and championship leading Liverpool FCs Adrian Vallés (SP), from 10th position.
AS Romas Jonathan Kennard and Galatasarays Scott Mansell are placed seventh and 17th respectively on the colourful grid.
The drivers of PSV Eindhoven and FC Porto, along with the British club trio, wore black armbands in respect of Sir Robert William "Bobby" Robson CBE, who died yesterday (31 Jul) aged 76 after a long battle with cancer. He managed the Dutch (1990-92/98-99) and Portuguese (1994-6) league clubs as well as the England national soccer team (1982-90).
Corinthians: Antônio Pizzonia (BRA)
It has been a very good day for us. Its my second pole in three races. We were strong in our dry qualifying session but the car was also good in the wet practice earlier in the day. So, rain or shine, I am very positive for tomorrow.
Olympiacos CFP: Davide Rigon (ITA)
I was on the limit the conditions were bad but honestly I hope the rain stays. I will be happier for a wet race. I won here last year I like this track a lot and starting from the front row I have a very good chance of scoring my second podium of the season.
FC Basel: Max Wissel (D)
I was just 0.039secs slower than Antônio so I know I have the pace in the dry while I was fourth fastest in a wet practice so it seems that whatever the conditions we have a well-balanced car so things are looking good for FC Basel.