TUSC: Bourdais, Action Express Storm to Sebring Pole

RaceChaser Staff Featured, Road Racing, Southeast, WeatherTech 0 Comments

March 14, 2014 — IMSA photo — SEBRING, Fla. – Based on the team’s performance in practice, Sebastien Bourdais didn’t have great expectations for Friday afternoon’s Prototype (P) qualifying in his No. 5 Corvette Daytona Prototype.

His main goal was to run a few good laps to get a better feel for the car’s performance.

Instead, Bourdais not only met but exceeded that goal, winning the TOTAL Pole Award for Saturday’s Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida with a lap of 1 minute, 51.917 seconds (120.303 mph).

He took the top spot in the Rolex 24 At Daytona-winning No. 5 Corvette Daytona Prototype co-driven by Action Express Racing teammates Christian Fittipaldi and Joao Barbosa.

“We were not sure where we were going to be, because it was difficult to get in a good lap [in practice] this morning,” Bourdais said.

“Traffic was very difficult, and it was tough to get a read on the car because we were always on the line and we couldn’t set a rhythm. It was better in qualifying, because I was able to string together a few good laps.”

The OAK Racing Nissan piloted by Olivier Pla and co-driven by Gustavo Yacaman and Alex Brundle qualified second with a lap of one minute, 52.086 seconds, and the Wayne Taylor Racing/Velocity Worldwide #10 Corvette DP completed the top three on the grid.

In Prototype Challenge (PC), five teams battled for the PC pole like a hot potato in Friday’s qualifying for the 62nd Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida. Bruno Junqueira managed to hold on, earning the TOTAL Pole Award in RSR Racing’s No. 09 ORECA FLM09 with a lap of 1 minute, 54.839 seconds (117.242 mph).

“I had a very good qualifying run,” said Junqueira, who earned two PC victories in 2013. “The track was very slippery, but the car behaved very well and I put in a very good lap.”

The GT Le Mans class was dominated by a new name to the world of sports car racing.

Michael Christensen may not be a household name among U.S. sports car fans – yet – but the 23-year-old Dane fully intends on changing that this season with a full-time TUDOR United SportsCar Championship ride for Porsche North America.

If Friday’s qualifying’s for the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida is any indication, he’s not wasting any time, setting the fastest time with a lap of one minute, 58.933 seconds (113.207 mph) in the always-competitive GT Le Mans (GTLM) class with his No. 912 Porsche 911 RSR.

And in GT Daytona, Dane Cameron earned the TOTAL Pole Award for Saturday’s Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida, driving the No. 94 BMW Z4 for Turner Motorsport to a lap of 2 minutes, 4.258 seconds (108.355 mph).

It’s an amazing pole for an amazing event,” said Cameron. “I just glanced at the time sheets and the top six or seven cars are within a second of each other. It shows you won’t be able to give up any time on the track or the pit lane.”

The Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida takes the green flag at 10 A.M. Eastern Saturday live on FOX Sports 1.

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