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O'Connell and Lee Take World Challenge Poles at Lime Rock Park
Lakeville, CT -  Johnny O'Connell, of Flowery Branch, GA, and Andy Lee, of Colorado Springs, CO posted the fastest laps in GT and GTS respectively during Thursday's qualifying session for the Round 8 Race of the Cadillac Grand Prix of Lime Rock Park. GT and GTS cars will take to the grid for the Round 8 race Friday at 12:10pm.

O'Connell, in the No. 3 Cadillac Racing/Cadillac CTS-V.R claimed his fourth pole of the 2013 season after posting a time of 51.271 at 103.497 mph. His lap also eclipsed the previous Pirelli World Challenge qualifying lap record at Lime Rock Park that was set by Lou Gigliotti in 2005.

"It is hot out there today," said O'Connell. "I have to hand it to Team Cadillac. We were fast right off of the trailer. They have a lot of data from here with all of the years that Corvette has run this track in the past. We had a very reasonable car right from the start."

"I was using every bit of the road in qualifying and dirt tracking the car around here this afternoon," added O'Connell. "I dropped a wheel off at the exit of West Bend coming down the hill. I was pushing the Cadillac hard. Lime Rock is to road racing what Bristol is to NASCAR. Traffic is going to be difficult. I think whoever keeps a cool head and doesn't make mistakes will pull this one (Round 8) off."

O'Connell's teammate Andy Pilgrim of Boca Raton, FL, in the No. 8, Cadillac Racing/Cadillac CTS-V.R qualified second with a 51.358.
"That makes it a nice fourth of July with two American Cadillac CTS-Vs on the front row here at Lime Rock," said O'Connell.

Mike Skeen, of Charlotte, NC, in the No. 2 Hawk Performance Chevrolet Corvette qualified third after posting a 51.664. Rounding out the top five in GT are Randy Pobst of Gainesville, GA in the No. 6 K-PAX Racing Volvo S60 who posted a 51.679 and Duncan Ende of Los Angeles, CA in the No. 24 STANDD.org/Merchant Services Audi R8 LMS who posted a 51.769.

James Sofronas of Villa Park, CA qualified sixth in the No. 14 GMG/Swisher Racing/Mobil 1/Audi R8 LMS (51.849), ahead of Alex Figge, of Denver, CO in the No. 9 K-PAX Racing Volvo S60 (52.062), Tim Pappas, of Boston, MA in the No. 54 Black Swan/Mercedes-Benz AMG SLS GT3 (52.139), Oliver Bryant in the No. 33 Fusion World Wide/Mercedes-Benz SLS GT3 (52.375). Rounding out the top 10 is Alex Welch, of Englewood, CO, in the No. 08 Spyder/Lasso/GMG/Audi R8 LMS (52.481).

In GTS, Andy Lee, of Colorado Springs, CO, took the GTS class pole in the No. 20 Best IT/Bondurant/Crown Seven Chevrolet Camaro. It is Lee's fifth pole position of the 2013 season, set with a time of 55.036 seconds (96.416 mph) on his second lap of the 20-minute session.

"I didn't think it would come that early, but I knew the car was fast from practice," said Lee. "This pole is a combination of a lot of things. We have a great car, and the guys are working their tails off. We have qualifying down, it's the races (that have led to a) 50/50 season."

Lawson Aschenbach, of Jupiter, FL, completed the Camaro 1-2. Aschenbach, driver of the No. 10 Blackdog Racing Chevrolet Camaro, had his best lap of 55.196. Class points leader Jack Baldwin, of Marietta, GA, in the No. 73 Motul/StopTech/Foametix Porsche Cayman S, lines up third with a best time of 55.390.

Mark Wilkins, of Toronto in the No. 38 KIA Motors America KIA Optima (55.492) and Steven Goldman, of Woodcliff Lake, NJ, in the No. 05 ZSA Motorsport & Trade Manage Porsche Cayman S (55.659) complete the top five on the grid.

Tom Long of Raleigh, NC, has the No. 60 LotusUSA/Taggart Autosport/LRR Lotus Exige sixth (55.660) ahead of the RealTime Racing teammates. Peter Cunningham of Milwaukee, WI, lines up seventh in the No. 42 Acura/HPD/RealTime Racing Acura TSX (55.967), with Nick Esayian of San Diego, CA, eighth in the No. 34 HPD/Acura/RealTime/Red Line Oil Acura TSX (56.456).

Robert Stout, of Brownsburg, IN, has taken the new Scion/TRD/Lucas Oil/E3 Spark Plug Scion FR-S up to ninth on the grid (56.924) with Aschenbach's teammate, Tony Gaples, of Libertyville, IL, 10th in the No. 11 Blackdog Speed Shop Chevrolet Camaro (56.970).

Of note, Alec Udell, of The Woodlands, Texas in the No. 17 Motorsports Development Ford Mustang Boss 302R, had an engine change and will start from the rear of the GTS class field for Round 8 on Friday. Udell set the fastest lap in Round Six at Detroit, and finished on the podium in Round Seven there.

Qualifying positions are provisional until posted final.

Round Eight is scheduled for tomorrow Friday, July 5 at 12:10 p.m. (EDT). Round Nine is scheduled for Saturday, July 6 at 10:35 a.m. (EDT).

All races will be streamed live at www.world-challengetv.com and then aired on the NBC Sports Network July 20 at 4 p.m. (EDT).


Pos CL No. Driver Car Time Speed
1 GT (3) Johnny O'Connell Cadillac CTS-V.R 0:51.271 103.497.
2 GT (8) Andy Pilgrim Cadillac CTS-V.R 0:51.358 103.321.
3 GT (2) Mike Skeen Chevrolet Corvette 0:51.664 102.709.
4 GT (6) Randy Pobst Volvo S60 0:51.679 102.680.
5 GT (24) Duncan Ende Audi R8 LMS 0:51.769 102.501.
6 GT (14) James Sofronas Audi R8 LMS 0:51.849 102.343.
7 GT (9) Alex Figge Volvo S60 0:52.062 101.924.
8 GT (54) Tim Pappas Mercedes-Benz AMG SLS GT3 0:52.139 101.774.
9 GT (33) Oliver Bryant Mercedes-Benz SLS GT3 0:52.375 101.315.
10 GT (08) Alex Welch Audi R8 LMS 0:52.481 101.110.
11 GT (95) Bill Ziegler Audi R8 LMS 0:53.932 98.390.
12 GT (12) Tim Bell Nissan GTR 1:46.385 49.879.
13 GT (85) Craig Stanton Porsche 911 GT3 no time.
14 GTS (20) Andy Lee Chevrolet Camaro 0:55.036 96.416.
15 GTS (10) Lawson Aschenbach Chevrolet Camaro 0:55.196 96.137.
16 GTS (73) Jack Baldwin Porsche Cayman S 0:55.390 95.800.
17 GTS (38) Mark Wilkins Kia Optima 0:55.492 95.624.
18 GTS (05) Steven Goldman(R) Porsche Cayman S 0:55.659 95.337.
19 GTS (60) Tom Long Lotus Exige 0:55.660 95.336.
20 GTS (42) Peter Cunningham Acura TSX 0:55.967 94.813.
21 GTS (34) Nick Esayian Acura TSX 0:56.456 93.991.
22 GTS (86) Robert Stout Scion FR-S 0:56.924 93.219.
23 GTS (11) Tony Gaples Chevrolet Camaro 0:56.970 93.143.
24 GTS (96) Brad Adams Ford Mustang Boss 302S 0:57.553 92.200.
25 GTS (66) Ben Keating Aston Martin Vantage GT4 0:57.612 92.105.
26 GTS (61) Jim Taggart(R) Lotus Exige 0:57.773 91.849.
27 GTS (97) Mitch Landry(R) Ford Mustang Boss 302S 0:57.783 91.833.
28 GTS (72) Buz McCall Porsche Cayman S 0:57.925 91.608.
29 GTS (63) Drew Regitz(R) BMW M3 E46 0:57.981 91.519.
30 GTS (62) Mark Klenin BMW M3 E92 0:58.117 91.305.
31 GTS (29) Harry Curtin Chevrolet Camaro 0:58.263 91.076.
32 GTS (21) Ardee Toppe Ford Mustang Boss 302 0:58.602 90.549.
33 GTS (01) Don Istook Audi TT RS 0:58.854 90.162.
34 GTS (88) Bradford S. Sofronas BMW E 46 M3 1:00.513 87.690.
35 GTS (51) Ric Bushey Nissan 370 Z 1:00.771 87.318.
36 GTS (07) Brian Kleeman Nissan 370 Z 1:01.667 86.049.
37 GTS (17) Alec Udell Ford Mustang Boss 302R no time. -
38 GTS (36) Nic Jonsson Kia Optima no time. -
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