Westbrooks storms to Ford GTLM pole

July 2, 2016

Westbrooks storms to Ford GTLM pole

July 2, 2016


They won at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, scored victory at Le Mans and now Ford has taken the GTLM pole for this weekends 6 Hours of Watkins Glen with British ace Richard Westbook.

The Laguna Seca winner set a time of 1:41.301 to beat the pair of BMW entries of Dirk Werner and John Edwards. Westbrook’s Le Mans-winning teammate Joey Hand was fourth fastest.

The time smashed the existing track record of 1:44.797  set last year with faster-spec GTLM cars and a repaved Watkins Glen track surface helping the dramatic time drop.

westbook_pole2“Its clear we’re in a good spot right now. These good things don’t last forever, we know that, especially with the competition we have out there, they’ll come back fighting,” Westbrook said.

“We’ve got a big deficit in the championship so we need to make hay while the sun shines and close the gap to the Corvette. I’m loving driving this car at the moment, its been amazing to drive.”

“It’ll been interesting with how hot its predicted to be tomorrow. Its a new surface here and it will be new for everyone how we handle the tire over the stint.”

Westbook is aiming for his third consecutive victory here at Watkins Glen. The Brit triumphed overall the past two years with Visit Florida Racing in the Prototype division but doesn’t believe there are many lessons that will transfer from prototypes to GTLM.

“No, it’s completely different. I have a really good record in the prototype, so I’m going for the hat-trick this weekend,” he said.

“The biggest difference is the tire but I’ve got a really good feel for this track.”

Westbrook will be reunited with his teammate Ryan Briscoe who had to leave the track on Friday to be at the birth of his second child.

“Its been an interesting weekend this weekend with my team mate not driving so far, so I’ll put my feet up in warmup tomorrow and let him get some laps in,” Westbrook said.

“We tested last month, so Ryan is up to speed. He’ll get down to it pretty quickly knowing Ryan. We haven’t talked about the drive rotation and how we do that. There are various situations you can do with the drivers.”

Pole in the GTD class originally went to Robin Liddell’s Audi but the Stevenson Motorsports entry failed post-tech inspection due to a ride height issue and will start at the rear of the grid. The No.23 Team Seattle Porsche will now take over the top spot.




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