vendredi 5 mai 2017

John Edwards gives BMW Team RLL the GTLM pole at COTA

By Victor Forner

BMW Team RLL's John Edwards and Martin Tomczyk will start from GTLM pole position in tomorrow's 2 hours and 40 minutes IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race at the Circuit of the Americas.

John Edwards put the #24 BMW M6 GTE set the best time in class in the qualifying session, 2:02.833. The American ace was a few thousands faster than Ferrari official driver, Giancarlo Fisichella (#62 Ferrari 488 GTE).

"It’s been a while since I’ve gotten a pole, so it is really gratifying to see number one after I stepped out of the car." said John Edwards after the qualifying session. "It was nerve racking but ultimately I was able to stay on top and keep the pole. COTA is a challenging place as it has a little mix of everything. There is less than a quarter of a second separating the first seven cars so we know tomorrow is going to be a very tight race. Managing the tires and traffic are going to play a key role and we’ll do everything we can to close it up tomorrow for a win here at COTA."

After a really close fight, Alexander Sims qualified the #25 BMW on the first spot of the second row, beating both Chip Ganassi Ford GT's by only 24 thousands. Ryan Briscoe was fourth with the #67 Ford GT while Dirk Müller was fifth with the sister #66 machine, the latter was only 9 thousands slower than his teammate.

Jan Magnussen (#3 Corvette C7.R) started well, but he couldn't improve on his last flying lap and finished sixth. Patrick Pilet (#911 Porsche 911 RSR) had troubles on the high-technical middle sector, while he was improving. The Frenchman will start seventh ahead of Tommy Milner (#4 Corvette C7.R) and Wolf Henzler (#912 Porsche 911 RSR) behind. The whole GTLM field finished in less than a second.

Tomorrow's race will start at 2:35 PM local time.

Photo: Michelin / BMW