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Bölükbaşı and Piana secure poles in Imola qualifying

25 July 2020

Qualifying for this weekend's GT4 European Series season opener at Imola resulted in pole positions for BMW teams Borusan Otomotiv Motorsport and RN Vision STS Racing Team.

Turkish talent Cem Bölükbaşı claimed pole position for the first race of the weekend in the #12 BMW M4 GT4. In race two, Italian Gabriele Piana will start from pole position in the #111 BMW M4 GT4.

Bölükbaşı claims maiden pole in first qualifying of the season
Cem Bölükbaşı secured his first ever pole position in the GT4 European Series in his third participation in the championship. The Borusan Otomotiv Motorsport driver was the fastest driver in a session that was interrupted twice.

At the start of the session the top spot swapped hands a number of times. It was NM Racing Team’s Lluc Ibanez who was on top, when the session was red-flagged with 11 minutes on the clock after the #17 V8 Racing Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R went off into the gravel.

When the session resumed the AGS Events Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4s joined as well and only his first proper flying lap of the session Theo Nouet put his car on provisional pole. But it was Bölükbaşı who was even faster and with a time of 1m51.978 he moved into first position.

Antoine Potty then stopped at Rivazza, bringing out the red flags once more. After the Toyota had returned to the pits the session was restarted again. In the final minutes Bas Schouten took second overall and pole in Silver for RN Vision STS Racing Team, with CMR’s Stephane Lémeret putting his Toyota GR Supra GT4 in between Schouten and Nouet.

Centri Porsche Ticino’s Ivan Jacoma qualified the #718 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 CS MR second in Pro-Am, just 0.179s ahead of the #22 Allied-Racing Porsche of Jan Kasperlik. Jörg Viebahn (Allied-Racing) and Wim Spinoy (SRT) completed the class top five.

In the Am category it was Paolo Meloni who put the W&D Racing Team BMW M4 GT4 on pole for race 1, ahead of Ibrahim Okyay (Borusan Otomotiv Motorsport) and Giuseppe Ghezzi (Autorlando Sport).

Piana beats Hasse-Clot and Møller-Madsen to pole for race 2
Gabriele Piana emerged as the winner of the battle for pole in Qualifying 2. The Italian battled with Denmark’s Nicolaj Møller-Madsen (Allied-Racing) and Valentin Hasse-Clot (AGS Events), but eventually put his RN Vision STS Racing Team BMW M4 GT4 on the top spot.

Møller-Madsen and Piana initially battled for the fastest time, with both drivers putting in lap times in the mid 1:51s. But with just under eight minutes left in the session it was Piana who managed to lap the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari in a time of 1m51.068s, securing pole position for Race 2.

In his first GT4 European Series qualifying, Valentin Hasse-Clot secured second place on the grid in the #27 AGS Events Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4, with Allied-Racing’s Nicolaj Mølller-Madsen in third overall and on pole in the Pro-Am Cup class. Gael Castelli will line up fourth on the grid, after setting the third-fastest time in the Silver Cup.

Fifth overall and second in Pro-Am was Joel Camathias in the #718 Centri Porsche Ticino entry, while Bastian Buus qualified the #22 Allied-Racing Porsche third in class on his qualifying debut.

Former GT3 champion Gilles Vannelet was almost eight tenths of a second clear of the opposition in the Am Cup in his #89 AGS Events Aston Martin. W&D Racing Team’s Stefano Valli was second in his class, with Ibrahim Okyay completing the top three.

The opening race of the 2020 GT4 European Series begins at 16.15 today. All of the action will be streamed live on the series’ website, Facebook and the GT World YouTube channel.