Brabham takes Long Beach ALMS pole

David Brabham fended off Gil de Ferran to put Highcroft Acura on pole position for the Long Beach round of the American Le Mans Series

Brabham takes Long Beach ALMS pole

Fresh from winning in St Petersburg two weeks ago, Brabham set a new qualifying record with his time of 1m11.627s, which came in response to being pushed back to a provisional third on the grid by the De Ferran and Fernandez Acuras.

Brabham's pole lap initially put him nearly a second clear of de Ferran, whose eponymous team had started on pole for both the preceding rounds. De Ferran then steadily narrowed the gap, eventually lapping just 0.072 seconds slower than the Highcroft car, only to then spin and tap the wall at Turn 1 moments after setting the time.

Fernandez Racing's LMP2 Acura took third overall and class pole, although Guy Smith showed the Dyson Lola-Mazda's improved form by getting to within 0.2s of Adrian Fernandez's pace.

Long Beach marks the final ALMS appearance of the factory GT1 Corvettes, which will race for the last time at the Le Mans 24 Hours before Chevrolet introduces its new GT2 car later in the season. Olivier Beretta added to his pole record as he beat team-mate Johnny O'Connell to class pole by 0.192s.

Jaime Melo put Risi Ferrari on GT2 pole after a titanic battle in the slowest but best supported class, only to be disqualified for a ride height infringement. The Brazilian dominated the first half of the GT session, before Patrick Long closed in and then edged ahead with the Flying Lizard Porsche.

After Melo's first response ended in a trip down the Turn 1 escape road, the Brazilian regrouped and snatched pole back with a 1m20.111s lap. Farnbacher Loles Porsche's then pushed the Flying Lizard car back to third, as Long's last chance to retaliate was spoiled when he was delayed by the Primetime Dodge Viper.

Risi's subsequent demotion to the back of the grid therefore put Farnbacher Loles on GT2 pole, ahead of Flying Lizard and the two Rahal Letterman BMWs.

Pos Cl Drivers Car Time 1. P1 Brabham/Sharp Acura ARX 02a 1m11.627s 2. P1 de Ferran/Pagenaud Acura ARX 02a 1m11.699s 3. P2 Fernandez/Diaz Acura ARX-01B 1m13.134s 4. P2 Dyson/Smith Lola B0986 Mazda 1m13.378s 5. P2 Leitzinger/Franchitti Lola B0986 Mazda 1m13.763s 6. P1 Field/Field/Ducote Lola B06/10 1m15.303s 7. P1 Lewis/Willman Lola B06/10 1m16.470s 8. GT1 Beretta/Gavin Chevrolet Corvette C6R 1m17.952s 9. GT1 Magnussen/O'Connell Chevrolet Corvette C6R 1m18.144s 10. GT2 Henzler/Werner Porsche 911 RSR 1m20.369s 11. GT2 Bergmeister/Long Porsche 911 RSR 1m20.577s 12. GT2 Mueller/Milner BMW E92 M3 1m21.300s 13. GT2 Hand/Auberlen BMW E92 M3 1m21.382s 14. GT2 Westbrook/Stuck Porsche 911 RSR 1m21.805s 15. GT2 Murry/Robertson Doran Ford GT-R 1m22.044s 16. GT2 Sellers/Cicero Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 1m22.222s 17. GT2 Gigliotti/Said Chevrolet Riley Corvette 1m22.334s 18. GT2 Feinberg/Hall Dodge Viper 1m22.519s 19. GT2 Law/Neiman Porsche 911 RSR 1m25.023s 20. GT2 Farnbacher/James Panoz Esperante 1m25.096s 21. GT2 Melo/Kaffer Ferrari 430 - 
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