GT – Corvette Pair Lock Out Road America Front Row

August 21, 2010

GT – Corvette Pair Lock Out Road America Front Row

August 21, 2010

Oliver Gavin secured Corvette's first pole of 2010 in the GT class at Road America. Photo credit: Rick Dole for Michelin North America

Although they have been shut out of victory lane so far this season, Corvette Racing has the best possible starting positions to break that unlucky streak in advance of Round 7 of the 2010 American Le Mans Series season at Road America.

Oliver Gavin and Jan Magnussen set both of their fastest laps just instants before a red flag flew for Andy Lally’s accident in a GTC class Porsche GT3 Cup. Gavin and Magnussen timed in at 2:06.509 and 2:06.674, respectively. Both drivers eclipsed the 2009 GT pole time of 2:06.950 set by Joey Hand in the Rahal Letterman BMW.

“It was a disjointed session, but I got the tires up to temperature at just the right time before the red came out,” Gavin said. “Everyone had one more shot, but it was great for us and Corvette that nobody beat the time.”

Gavin’s pole is the 19th of his ALMS career and fourth at Road America.

“I’m delighted, it’s been a while,” he added. “There have been lots of ups and downs but this is a great fillip for us. We tested here earlier for Le Mans, and this track is the closest to Le Mans so we expected to be very competitive here.”

A sincerely impressive achievement for the team in their Corvette ZR1s, which were only seventh and eighth in the Saturday morning practice session before making some setup changes in the afternoon. The team led the pre-qualifying practice later in the day.

The second Risi Competizione Ferrari, this week with Pierre Kaffer and Mika Salo in the No. 61, is once again the quicker of the two “rosso red” F430 GTs. Kaffer qualified third at 2:06.997 to complete a Michelin 1-2-3 on the grid.

Risi’s sister car with Jaime Melo and Gianmaria Bruni starts only seventh. Regardless of starting position, Melo will be a man to watch as the Brazilian is one of the hardest chargers in the series and fresh off one of the best passing maneuvers of the season last race at Mid-Ohio.

The cars Melo passed at Mid-Ohio – the two Rahal Letterman BMWs – line up fourth and eighth with the No. 90 ahead of the No. 92. Both cars got a second clean lap in late in the session after the red flag to improve their times.

In-between the two BMWs are the No. 45 Flying Lizard Porsche with Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long, the No. 01 Extreme Speed Ferrari F430 GT and the No. 62 Risi Ferrari.

Lally’s time was still second fastest in the GTC class, but that team will have to repair their Porsche GT3 Cup. Black Swan Racing’s Jeroen Bleekemolen captured his fifth straight pole in the class.

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