Joey Hand threw the whole lot he had at his final lap of qualifying Saturday for Sunday’s Michelin GT Problem at Virginia Worldwide Raceway.
“I instructed (the crew) coming down the hill on the final lap, if this does not do it I do not know what’s going to,” stated the motive force of the No. 66 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT. “I bought the whole lot I might out of it.”
Because it seems, the whole lot was simply sufficient. Hand will begin the race from the pole place.
Sunday’s race shall be televised dwell on FS1 starting at 1:30 p.m. ET and in addition shall be broadcast dwell by IMSA Radio on IMSA.com, RadioLeMans.com and SiriusXM Radio.
Hand’s finest time within the 15-minute qualifying session underneath excellent climate situations was 1 minute, 40.211 seconds (117.472 mph), breaking Jan Magnussen’s year-old GTLM monitor report of 1:41.557 by greater than a second. On Sunday, Hand and co-driver Dirk Mueller, who additionally certified on pole for the most-recent WeatherTech Championship race at Highway America earlier this month, will go for his or her second consecutive GTLM victory.
“Identical to Highway America, we rolled out of the trailer so good right here,” Hand stated. “We’ve not touched loads. We did just a few laps and Dirk and I stated ‘Let’s put it away. We’ll take it like that, simply put some new tires on it and a few gas and simply go.’
“We’re actually excited. Dirk’s performed such a terrific job setting it up, he was on the pole at Highway America and it’s an effective way to start out. I instructed him at RA I am tremendous cozy, I instructed him right here I am tremendous cozy. I feel good issues can occur right here.”
If good issues do occur for the No. 66 crew on Sunday, it’ll go a great distance within the battle for the GTLM championship battle. Hand and Mueller presently path factors co-leaders Jan Magnussen and Antonio Garcia — the defending winners of the Michelin GT Problem — by eight factors, 239-231. Together with Sunday’s race, there are three rounds left on the 2017 WeatherTech Championship season. Magnussen certified the No. three Corvette sixth.
Second and third on the GTLM grid went to BMW Workforce RLL teammates. Alexander Sims certified second with a finest lap of 1:40.415 (117.233 mph) within the No. 25 BMW M6 GTLM he co-drives with Invoice Auberlen. Sims and Auberlen are within the championship combine as properly, only one level behind Mueller and Hand.
John Edwards certified third within the No. 24 BMW M6 GTLM at 1:40.441 (117.203 mph). Edwards’ co-driver is Martin Tomczyk.
Jeroen Mul topped the charts with a lap of 1 minute, 43.391 seconds (117.472 mph).
A trio of drivers within the GT Daytona (GTD) class from three completely different producers had a battle on Saturday afternoon in qualifying for the Michelin GT Problem at Virginia Worldwide Raceway.
On the finish of the 15-minute session, the No. 16 Change Racing Lamborghini Huracán GT3 of Jeroen Mul topped the charts with a lap of 1 minute, 43.391 seconds (117.472 mph). Mul, the BMW of Jesse Krohn and the Mercedes of Jeroen Bleekemolen every swapped the highest spot all through the session with Mul finally setting the quickest lap within the remaining minute.
It was the second consecutive pole for Mul and the Change Racing crew.
“I’ve to say that the crew has performed such an excellent job getting ready the automotive this weekend,” stated Mul, who additionally was quickest in every of the three WeatherTech Championship observe periods of the weekend. “So, this again to again pole could be very a lot deserving for this Change Racing crew. We’re tremendous excited to have the ability to do that for our dwelling crowd.”
Change Racing is predicated in close by Harmony, North Carolina, and is on the lookout for its first win of the season. To try this, they’ll must fend off challenges from a contingent of GTD opponents. Amongst them is the Highway America-winning No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 of Krohn, who certified second at 1:43.621 (113.606).
Andrew Davis jumped into the top-three on his remaining lap of the session within the No. 57 Stevenson Motorsports Audi R8 LMS with a lap 1:43.770, transferring Bleekemolen to fourth within the No. 33 Riley Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT3.
5 completely different producers made up the highest 5 positions in GTD qualifying with Jack Hawksworth qualifying fifth within the No. 15 Lexus RC F.
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