Thed Björk claims front row in final WTCC qualifying of 2016

Thed Björk claimed his and Polestar Cyan Racing’s best ever FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) qualifying result with second place, just four hundredths of a second from pole position, at Losail International Raceway in Qatar.

”To start from the front row is awesome, but I am actually both happy and unhappy. I am really happy over the improvements we have made, but I am unhappy with the mistake I made on my lap. Without it I would no doubt have been on pole, but that’s life sometimes and I will fight really hard in the race,” said Thed Björk.

Team-mate Robert Dahlgren will start from third position in the first race, despite being hindered by a red flag during his first attempt.

”The red flag came just as I was about to finish my lap, so that did of course disrupt our tyre strategy. But I am nonetheless happy with the progress the team has accomplished with the car since yesterday and I think we are in a strong position for the races,” said Robert Dahlgren.

Björk was 0.034 seconds from pole and ahead of both factory Citroën drivers José María López, the reigning triple World Champion, and Yvan Muller, four-time World Champion.

”We are very happy to see our development programme during the season paying off, making for a promising end to the season. Both drivers and the team did a good job to overcome the challenges in testing and we are in for two exciting final races of the season later tonight,” said Alexander Murdzevski Schedvin, Head of Motorsport at Polestar.

The season will end later tonight with the two final night races of 2016, the first one starting at 19:20 CET and the second at 20:35: http://wtcc.polestar.com

WTCC Race of Qatar
Circuit: Losail International Circuit
Length: 5380 m
Lap record (WTCC): 2:01.628 (Lopez)

Results
Q1 – Top 5
1 José María López Citroën C-Elysée 1:59.788
2 Thed Björk Volvo S60 +0.468
3 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic +0.873
4 Gabriele Tarquini Lada Vesta +1.056
5 Rob Huff Honda Civic +1.181
...
8 Robert Dahlgren Volvo S60 +1.402

Q2 – Top 5
1 José María López Citroën C-Elysée 1:59.798
2 Yvan Muller Citroën C-Elysée +0.335
3 Thed Björk Volvo S60 +0.599
4 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic +0.731
5 Medhi Bennani Citroën C-Elysée +1.054
...
8 Robert Dahlgren Volvo S60 +1.316

Q3
1 Medhi Bennani Citroën C-Elysée 2:00.456
2 Thed Björk Volvo S60 +0.036
3 José María López Citroën C-Elysée +0.439
4 Yvan Muller Citroën C-Elysée +1.176
5 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic No time

Schedule
(Times in CET)
Thursday 24/11
12:00 Shakedown (30 min)
14:00 Free Practice 1 (30 min)
19:00 Free Practice 2 (30 min)

Friday 25/11
12:30 Qualifying (60 min)
19:20 Race 1 (12 laps)
20:35 Race 2 (13 laps)

Championship standings
1 José María López Citroën C-Elysée 364 points
2 Yvan Muller Citroën C-Elysée 237 (-217)
3 Tiago Monteiro Honda Civic 204 (-160)
4 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic 191 (-173)
5 Medhi Bennani Citroën C-Elysée 181 (-183)

11 Thed Björk Volvo S60 93 (-271)
13 Fredrik Ekblom Volvo S60 45 (-319)
15 Néstor Girolami Volvo S60 12 (-352)

TV Schedule
International: https://www.fiawtcc.com/watch-it-on-tv/
Online: http://premium.fiawtcc.com

2016 FIA World Touring Car Championship Entry List
No – Driver – Team – Car
2 – Gabriele Tarquini – Lada Sport Rosneft – Lada Vesta WTCC
3 – Tom Chilton – Sébastien Loeb Racing – Citroën C-Elysée WTCC
5 – Norbert Michelisz – Honda Racing Team JAS – Honda Civic WTCC
7 – Hugo Valente – Lada Sport Rosneft – Lada Vesta WTCC
9 – Tom Coronel – ROAL Motorsport – Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1
10 – Nicky Catsburg – Lada Sport Rosneft – Lada Vesta WTCC
11 – Grégoire Demoustier – Sébastien Loeb Racing – Citroën C-Elysée
12 – Rob Huff – Honda World Touring Car Team – Honda Civic WTCC
18 – Tiago Monteiro – Honda World Touring Car Team – Honda Civic
25 – Mehdi Bennani – Sébastien Loeb Racing – Citroën C-Elysée WTCC
27 – John Filippi – Campos Racing – Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1
37 – José María López – Citroën Racing – Citroën C-Elysée WTCC
55 – Ferenc Ficza – Zengo Motorsport – Honda Civic WTCC
62 – Thed Björk – Polestar Cyan Racing – Volvo S60 TC1
63 – Robert Dahlgren – Polestar Cyan Racing – Volvo S60 TC1
68 – Yvan Muller – Citroën Racing – Citroën C-Elysée WTCC
77 – James Thompson – Münnich Motorsport – Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1
99 – Dániel Nagy – Zengo Motorsport – Honda Civic WTCC

FIA World Touring Car Championship 2016 Calendar
1-3 April FIA WTCC Race of France (Circuit Paul Ricard)
15-17 April FIA WTCC Race of Slovakia (Slovakia Ring)
22-24 April FIA WTCC Race of Hungary (Hungaroring)
7-8 May FIA WTCC Race of Morocco (Moulay El Hassan, Marrakech) S
26-28 May FIA WTCC Race of Germany (Nürburgring Nordschleife)
10-12 June FIA WTCC Race of Russia (Moscow Raceway)
24-26 June FIA WTCC Race of Portugal (Circuit de Vila Real) S
5-7 August FIA WTCC Race of Argentina (Circ. Termas de Río Hondo)
2-4 September FIA WTCC Race of Japan (Twin Ring Motegi)
23-25 September FIA WTCC Race of China (Shanghai Int. Circuit)
4-6 November FIA WTCC Race of Thailand (Chang International Circuit)
23-25 November FIA WTCC Race of Qatar (Losail International Circuit) N

S = Street race
N = Night Race

About Polestar
Polestar is the performance brand of Volvo Cars. The company was founded as a motorsport team in 1996 and has been successful in numerous championships, racing with various Volvo models. In 2009, Polestar started to offer performance related products and thereby intensified the business relations with Volvo Cars. The first performance cars, based on Volvo’s S60 and V60, were launched in 2014.
In 2015, Volvo Cars acquired the performance unit of Polestar, as a strong commitment towards a credible performance offer and with the mission to define future premium performance.

About Cyan Racing
Cyan Racing is the motorsport partner to Polestar. The company is owned by Christian Dahl and handles all motorsport operations of Polestar. Cyan Racing, formerly named Polestar Racing, has claimed six STCC drivers’ titles and eight STCC teams’ titles with the Volvo 850, S40, C30 and S60.