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SA on pole for Mexico quali

2006-02-26 08:31
Monterrey, Mexico - Stephen Simpson topped the time sheets at the end of the third and final official practice session for Sunday's A1 Grand Prix of Nations in Monterrey, Mexico.

Making the most of fresh tyres, the 22-year-old from Cape Town put Team South Africa ahead of the other 21 nations contesting this ninth round of the inaugural >I>World Cup of Motorsport.

With seconds remaining in the 60-minute session, which was held in warm, dry conditions, Simpson recorded a fastest time of the morning of 1 min 24.016 sec on only his 12th and final lap.

This put him a significant 0.620 sec ahead of second-placed Team Ireland (Ralph Firman). T

hird fastest was former Formula One driver Jos Verstappen of the Netherlands, followed by Switzerland's Neel Jani, Brazil's Christian Fittipaldi (another former F1 driver), Great Britain?s Robbie Kerr and Mexico's Salvador Duran.

Track got faster

A very pleased Simpson commented afterwards that the track had got faster as the session progressed and the team waited until late in the session (he was the 18th of the 22 drivers to take to the track) before sending him out.

With a new set of tyres he immediately went to the top of the time sheets after just five laps. A quick pit stop to make some fine adjustments and he was out again for his final three laps and fastest time of the day.

  • Today's qualifying will be broadcast live on SABC3 from 22h00 to 00h00 and Sunday?s two races live from 23h00 to 02h30 (SA time).
  • Practice results

    A1 Team

    Driver

    Aggregate Time

    1

    South Africa

    Stephen Simpson

    2.44.895

    2

    France

    Alexandre Premat

    2.45.848

    3

    Switzerland

    Neel Jani

    2.46.147

    4

    Italy

    Enrico Toccacelo

    2.46.657

    5

    USA

    Bryan Herta

    2.46.820

    6

    Czech Republic

    Tomas Enge

    2.46.894

    7

    Netherlands

    Jos Verstappen

    2.46.975

    8

    Ireland

    Ralph Firman

    2.46.991

    9

    Brazil

    Christian Fittipaldi

    2.47.066

    10

    Portugal

    Alvaro Parente

    2.48.071

    11

    Malaysia

    Alex Yoong

    2.48.447

    12

    Germany

    Timo Scheider

    2.48.810

    13

    New Zealand

    Matt Halliday

    2.49.025

    14

    Mexico

    Salvador Duran

    2.49.090

    15

    Great Britain

    Robbie Kerr

    2.49.147

    16

    Lebanon

    Graham Rahal

    2.49.266

    17

    Japan

    Hayanari Shimoda

    2.49.364

    18

    Austria

    Patrick Friesacher

    2.49.343

    19

    Canada

    Patrick Carpentier

    2.49.511

    20

    Indonesia

    Ananda Mikola

    2.50.169

    21

    Australia

    Christian Jones

    2.54.116

    22

    China

    Ma Quinghua

    2.56.400

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