De Ferran takes another ALMS pole
|Saturday, August 15th 2009, 21:09 GMT|
Gil de Ferran continued his team's recent run of American Le Mans Series success by taking pole position for the Elkhart Lake round.
The Brazilian beat title rival David Brabham's Highcroft Acura by 0.823 seconds.
"It was a great day for us today," said de Ferran, who will be aiming for a fifth straight victory tomorrow along with team-mate Simon Pagenaud. "Since we unloaded the car has been fantastic."
Marino Franchitti took his and the Dyson Lola-Mazda combination's first LMP2 pole in third overall, fending off a late challenge from Adrian Fernandez (Fernandez Acura).
"The car was awesome," said Franchitti. "I actually made a real mess of the first run. I'm a bit disappointed with myself for that, but overall I'm just delighted for all the guys. It means so much."
Franchitti's team-mate Guy Smith secured fifth on the grid ahead of the Cytosport Porsche and the LMP1 privateers despite missing much of the session while his Lola-Mazda was repaired following a crash in pre-qualifying practice.
BMW took a breakthrough one-two in GT2 qualifying, with Joey Hand beating his Rahal Letterman Racing team-mate Dirk Muller to pole by 0.123s.
"How about this BMW around Road America?" said Hand. "I don't think anybody really saw it coming, but this place has been really good to BMW. I've put it on our first pole of our new programme and I hope to take the first win too."
The championship-leading Flying Lizard Porsche of Jorg Bergmeister and Patrick Long will start third, just ahead of the two Corvettes, while the Flying Lizard Porsche and Risi Ferrari set identical times in sixth and seventh.
Guy Cosmo dominated in the Challenge class, taking pole by over a second.
Pos Cl Drivers Car Time 1. P1 De Ferran/Pagenaud Acura ARX-02a 1m48.216s 2. P1 Brabham/Sharp Acura ARX-02a 1m49.039s 3. P2 Leitzinger/Franchitti Mazda Lola B09 86 1m51.010s 4. P2 Fernandez/Diaz Acura ARX-01b 1m51.222s 5. P2 Dyson/Smith Mazda Lola B09 86 1m51.832s 6. P2 Pickett/Graf Porsche RS Spyder 1m51.922s 7. P1 Willman/McMurry Lola B06/10 AER 1m53.649s 8. P1 Field/Field Lola B06/10 AER 1m55.209s 9. GT2 Auberlen/Hand BMW M3 E92 2m06.950s 10. GT2 Mueller/Milner BMW M3 E92 2m07.073s 11. GT2 Bergmeister/Long Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 2m07.362s 12. GT2 O'Connell/Magnussen Corvette C6.R 2m07.387s 13. GT2 Gavin/Beretta Corvette C6.R 2m07.619s 14. GT2 Werner/Henzler Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 2m07.740s 15. GT2 Melo/Kaffer Ferrari 430 GT 2m07.740s 16. GT2 Robertson/Murry/Robertson Doran Ford GT Mk 7 2m08.188s 17. GT2 Farnbacher/James Panoz Esperante 2m08.800s 18. GT2 Feinberg/Hall Dodge Viper 2m08.822s 19. GT2 Neiman/Law Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 2m13.501s 20. Cha Baker/Cosmo Porsche 911 GT3 Cup 2m16.098s 21. Cha Snow/Snow Porsche 911 GT3 Cup 2m17.202s 22. Cha Brown/Sweedler Porsche 911 GT3 Cup 2m18.289s 23. Cha Hoaglund/Faieta Porsche 911 GT3 Cup 2m18.970s 24. Cha Parker/Pickering Porsche 911 GT3 Cup 2m20.554s 25. Cha Curtis/Sofronas Porsche 911 GT3 Cup 26. P1 Mowlem/Johansson Ginetta-Zytek 09SH