Allan McNish's Le Mans Diary

The on-track action began on Wednesday, and as Allan McNish tells us in his exclusive daily diary here on autosport.com, the Audis set the pace

Allan McNish's Le Mans Diary

I enjoyed a relatively leisurely morning before practising driver changes in the pit garage. Fortunately, my team-mates Stephane Ortelli and Laurent Aiello are of a similar build and size, and we do not need to change seats so we can get the time down to around 25secs.

Audi Sport Team Joest then had a final meeting about qualifying, had lunch of pasta - it's only Wednesday and I'm already sick of it, why can't we have haggis on the menu! The drivers have cabins solely for their use in the paddock and I went there to sit and cool down there before qualifying began.

It's funny in that by 6.30pm, you feel as if you've done a day's work and you should be thinking of going back to the hotel but then qualifying begins at 7pm. The Audi R8 ran very well, much better than in the pre-race test in April. The car was more consistent, it felt nicer but unfortunately the circuit was slower due to the heat, dirt and oil.

I used a soft race tyre, and my lap during the first two-hour session was good enough for provisional pole-position at the time. But "Dindo" Capello, using qualifying tyres, went faster in the third hour and then I was bumped off the provisional front row by Frank Biela with just two minutes remaining.

I tried to go quicker after the one hour break but it was not a good lap, and I encountered traffic and aborted. It's great to have all three Audis in the top-three positions but I'm determined, and confident, of getting pole tomorrow...


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