Rolex 24: Negri puts Ligier Honda on pole

Ozz Negri wins pole for the Michael Shank Ligier Honda team

Michael Shank Racing will start the 53rd Rolex 24 at Daytona from the pole position, courtesy of Ozz Negri in qualifying Thursday.

The Brazilian recorded a best lap of 1:39.194 in his No. 60 Ligier JS P2 Honda in the 15-minute prototype qualifying session, edging out the No. 02 Chip Ganassi Racing Riley-Ford of Scott Dixon by 0.108 seconds.

It marked the first pole for a P2 car at Daytona and also in the team's debut outing with the Onroak Automotive-built prototype, following more than a decade of running DP machinery in GRAND-AM competition.

Negri will share the P2 entry with John Pew, AJ Allmendinger and Matt McMurry this weekend.

Dixon's Ganassi Ford to start 2nd

Dixon, who reeled off a 1:39.302 in his DP car, was second, followed by the sister Ganassi entry, qualified by Scott Pruett in third.

Defending Rolex 24 winner and Prototype class champion Joao Barbosa was fourth in the No. 5 Action Express Racing Corvette DP, while the No. 0 DeltaWing DWC13 of Andy Meyrick completed the top-five.

Olivier Pla made it two Ligiers in the top-six, driving the No. 57 Krohn Racing entry to a 1:39.683 lap time, followed by Ricky Taylor in the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette DP.

The top-seven qualifiers all broke the 1:40 barrier and were separated by less than seven tenths of a second.

Mowlem Captures PC Pole With Last-Lap Charge
Told he was running in the second position as he was about to begin his final lap in the Prototype Challenge (PC) session, Johnny Mowlem put his head down and ran a lap of 1:42.318 (125.257 mph). That was good enough to take the TOTAL Pole Award in the No. 16 BAR1 Motorsports ORECA FLM09 he co-drives with Tom Papadopoulos, Tomy Drissi, Brian Alder and Martin Plowman.

[adinserter name="GOOGLE AD"]"On my last lap, I left nothing on the table," said Mowlem, winning his first TUDOR Championship pole and third of his career in North America. "John Travis – my engineer – said 'Keep pushing, keep pushing.' So I took the 21-year-old attitude I used to have and threw caution to the wind. On that last lap I got it really hooked coming out of the first horseshoe, and I felt it could be a real good lap. Through the bus stop, I turned in, braked really late and got on the throttle. I held it flat and hoped it would hook up on the exit. It did, and I got pole."

Colin Braun, the 2014 Rolex 24 PC pole winner, briefly unseated Mowlem from the top spot near the end of the topsy-turvy session. He had to settle for second after setting a best lap of 1:42.498 (125.037 mph) in the No. 54 Composite Resources/Flex Box ORECA FLM09 fielded by CORE autosport. Braun will return with the winning PC lineup from last year's Rolex 24, joining Jon Bennett, James Gue and Mark Wilkins.

Tom Kimber-Smith qualified third in PC, running 1:42.829 (124.634 mph) in the No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports Cuttwood/Spyder Orafol ORECA FLM09 co-driven by Michael Guasch, Andrew Palmer and Andrew Novich.

More than 15 hours of live FOX Sports coverage will be available to viewers in the United States beginning with a two-hour FOX broadcast network beginning at 2 p.m. ET on Saturday. It is the second-consecutive year that the Rolex 24 telecast has opened on the broadcast channel, which is available in approximately 115 million homes in the United States..

"I knew that the DPs were going to get pretty close to us in qualifying, especially with the cooler temperatures, and I knew it was going to take everything that car had," said Negri. "Mike was asking me for two tenths, three tenths, and I was wondering where are we going to find that?"

Gavin puts Corvette on GTLM pole
Oliver Gavin gave Corvette Racing its first pole at Daytona International Speedway since 2000, in the process extending an impressive streak that highlights the competitiveness of the GT Le Mans (GTLM) class, Friday in qualifying for the 53rd Rolex 24 At Daytona. With his lap of one minute, 43.488 seconds (123.840 mph) in the No. 4 Corvette C7.R, Gavin became the 12th different pole winner in 12 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship races, dating back to last year's Rolex 24 – the inaugural TUDOR Championship event.

"It's a very competitive class, I think they all are," said Gavin, who earned his first TUDOR Championship pole, his 21st career in North American endurance sports car racing. "That's the depth of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship; there are plenty of great drivers and great teams out there.

"I have to thank (teammate) Jan [Magnussen]; he towed me around a lot on that lap and helped me get this pole position, so I have to thank him for that. I tried to repay him by towing him around for a few laps. I just had a little bit of extra straight-line speed."

Gavin used the draft to shoot to the top of the leaderboard early in the 15-minute session, besting the No. 51 AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italia of Gianmaria Bruni by 0.342 seconds. After leading early in the session, Bruni turned his fastest lap of 1:43.830 (123.433 mph) shortly after Gavin's flyer, narrowly edging Pedro Lamy in the No. 98 Aston Martin Racing Gulf Aston Martin Vantage, 1:43.960 (123.278 mph).

John Edwards qualified fourth in the No. 24 BMW Team RLL IHG Rewards Club BMW Z4 GTE, 1:43.966 (123.271 mph), making it four different automotive manufacturers in the first two rows.

Davison Drives Aston Martin Vantage To Fifth Consecutive GTD TOTAL Pole Award
James Davison took advantage of a mid-session red flag to steal his fifth consecutive TOTAL Pole Award in the GT Daytona (GTD) class dating back to last season. After the wheel fell off of Kuno Wittmer's No. 93 Riley Motorsports TI Automotive Dodge Viper SRT GT3-R seven minutes into the 15-minute session, teams had only three minutes to run one final lap before the end of qualifying.

[adinserter name="GOOGLE AD"]While several teams opted not to go out for the final minutes, Davison did and promptly put the No. 007 TRG-AMR LaSalle/Royal Purple/Orion Energy Aston Martin Vantage on the pole with a lap of one minute, 47.272 (119.472 mph).

"I'm blown away we ended up on pole, to be honest," said Davison, the leader in TUDOR Championship poles. "We waited in the pits and it went red, so I only had a lap to pull it off. Obviously the car was good and I hit my marks, but we were a bit lucky to pull it off."

Jeroen Bleekemolen, who had the top spot prior to the red flag, qualified second with a lap of 1:47.424 (119.303 mph) while Christopher Zoechling qualified third at 1:47.451 (119.273 mph) in Konrad Motorsports' No. 28 Porsche 911 GT America.

The 53rd Rolex 24 At Daytona is the season-opening TUDOR Championship event and also the opening round of the four-race Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup.

More than 15 hours of live FOX Sports coverage will be available to viewers in the United States beginning with a two-hour FOX broadcast network beginning at 2 p.m. ET on Jan. 24. It is the second consecutive year that the Rolex 24 telecast has opened on the broadcast channel, which is available in approximately 115 million homes in the United States.

The 53rd Rolex 24 at Daytona gets underway Saturday at 2:10 p.m. ET, with live coverage on FOX. Flag-to-flag coverage will also be available on IMSA Radio.

Qualifying Results

Pos Class Driver Team Car Time Gap
1 P J.Pew, O.Negri, A.Allmendinger, M.McMurry Michael Shank Racing with Curb-Agajanian Ligier/HPD 1m39.194s
2 P S.Dixon, T.Kanaan, K.Larson, J.McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Riley/Ford 1m39.302s 0.108s
3 P S.Pruett, J.Hand, C.Kimball, S.Karam Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Riley/Ford 1m39.309s 0.115s
4 P J.Barbosa, C.Fittipaldi, S.Bourdais Action Express Racing Corvette/Chevrolet 1m39.568s 0.374s
5 P M.Rojas, K.Legge, G.Chaves, A.Meyrick Claro / TracFoneDeltaWing Racing DeltaWing/Elan 1m39.625s 0.431s
6 P T.Krohn, O.Pla, N.Jonsson, A.Brundle Krohn Racing Ligier/Judd 1m39.683s 0.489s
7 P J.Taylor, R.Taylor, M.Angelelli Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette/Chevrolet 1m39.888s 0.694s
8 P B.Hartley, R.Barrichello, R.H.-Reay, T.Graves, S.Mayer Starworks Motorsport Riley/BMW 1m40.260s 1.066s
9 P E.Curran, D.Cameron, M.Papis, P.Keen Action Express Racing Corvette/Chevrolet 1m40.322s 1.128s
10 P R.Westbrook, M.Valiante, M.Rockenfeller Racing Corvette/Chevrolet 1m40.330s 1.136s
11 P R.Gewirtz, S.Lewis, M.Kvamme, D.Cheng RG Racing Riley/BMW 1m42.070s 2.876s
12 PC J.Mowlem, T.Papadopoulos, T.Drissi, B.Alder, M.Plowman BAR1 Motorsports ORECA/Chevrolet 1m42.318s 3.124s
13 P E.Brown, J.van Overbeek, J.Fogarty Tequila Patron ESM HPD 1m42.390s 3.196s
14 PC J.Bennett, C.Braun, M.Wilkins, J.Gue Core Autosport ORECA/Chevrolet 1m42.498s 3.304s
15 PC M.Guasch, A.Novich, A.Palmer, T.K.-Smith PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA/Chevrolet 1m42.829s 3.635s
16 PC M.Schultis, R.van der Zande, A.Popow, M.Hedlund, F.Albuquerque Starworks Motorsport ORECA/Chevrolet 1m43.322s 4.128s
17 PC M.Plowman, M.Drumwright, I.Breukers, S.Blackstock, R.Ruscitti BAR1 Motorsports ORECA/Chevrolet 1m43.442s 4.248s
18 GTLM O.Gavin, T.Milner, S.Pagenaud Corvette Racing Chevrolet 1m43.488s 4.294s
19 PC M.Goikhberg, C.Miller, S.Simpson, R.Mitchell JDC/Miller Motorsports ORECA/Chevrolet 1m43.514s 4.320s
20 P J.Bomarito, T.Nunez, J.Hinchcliffe, S.Tremblay Speedsource Mazda 1m43.782s 4.588s
21 GTLM F.Perrodo, E.Collard, G.Bruni, T.Vilander AF Corse Ferrari 1m43.830s 4.636s
22 GTLM P.Lamy, P.D.Lana, D.Turner, S.Mucke, M.Lauda Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin 1m43.960s 4.766s
23 GTLM J.M.Edwards, L.Luhr, J.Klingmann, G.Rahal BMW Team RLL BMW 1m43.966s 4.772s
24 GTLM J.Magnussen, A.Garcia, R.Briscoe Corvette Racing Chevrolet 1m43.976s 4.782s
25 GTLM P.Kaffer, D.Rigon, G.Fisichella, O.Beretta Risi Competizione Ferrari 1m43.986s 4.792s
26 PC C.Cumming, B.Junqueira, J.Hawksworth, G.Menezes RSR Racing ORECA/Chevrolet 1m43.992s 4.798s
27 GTLM B.Auberlen, D.Werner, A.Farfus, B.Spengler BMW Team RLL BMW 1m44.024s 4.830s
28 GTLM N.Tandy, P.Pilet, M.Lieb Porsche North America Porsche 1m44.082s 4.888s
29 P J.Pace, B.Defoor, D.Hinton, D.Schroeder Riley/BMW 1m44.423s 5.229s
30 GTLM W.Henzler, B.Sellers, P.Long Team Falken Tire Porsche 1m44.465s 5.271s
31 PC J.French, J.Mee, J.Vance, S.Johnston Performance Tech Motorsports ORECA/Chevrolet 1m44.473s 5.279s
32 GTLM J.Bergmeister, E.Bamber, F.Makowiecki Porsche North America Porsche 1m44.759s 5.565s
33 GTD C.Nielsen, J.Davison, C.Nygaard, B.Davis TRG-AMR Aston Martin 1m47.272s 8.078s
34 P J.Miller, T.Long, B.Devlin, S.Tremblay Speedsource Mazda 1m47.320s 8.126s
35 GTD B.Keating, J.Bleekemolen, A.Carter, M.Goossens, S.Bleekemolen Riley Motorsports Dodge 1m47.424s 8.230s
36 GTD K.Bachler, C.Zochling, C.Engelhart, L.Willsey, R.Ineichen Konrad Motorsport Porsche 1m47.451s 8.257s
37 GTD M.Snow, J.Heylen, P.Dempsey, P.Eng Wright Motorsports Porsche 1m47.535s 8.341s
38 GTD F.Longo, D.Serra, M.Gomes, A.Bertolini Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 1m47.805s 8.611s
39 GTD M.Winkelhock, R.Thorne, S.Hoshino, T.Fujii Flying Lizard Motorsports Audi 1m47.813s 8.619s
40 GTD P.Lindsey, S.Pumpelly, J.Norman, D.Ducote, K.Estre Park Place Motorsports Porsche 1m47.860s 8.666s
41 GTD J.Potter, A.Lally, M.Seefried, M.Ragginger Magnus Racing Porsche 1m48.099s 8.905s
42 GTD B.Sweedler, T.Bell, A.Lazzaro, J.Segal Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 1m48.117s 8.923s
43 GTD C.MacNeil, L.Keen, A.Davis, S.Gisbergen Alex Job Racing Porsche 1m48.200s 9.006s
44 GTD C.Haase, B.Miller, D.von Moltke, R.Rast Paul Miller Racing Audi 1m48.202s 9.008s
45 GTD P.Lathouras, M.Rugolo, R.Aguas, M.Griffin AF Corse Ferrari 1m48.614s 9.420s
46 GTD I.James, M.Farnbacher, A.Riberas Team Seattle/Alex Job Racing Porsche 1m48.683s 9.489s
47 GTD J.Michaelian, M.Beretta, C.De Phillippi, R.Flores Muehlner Motorsports America Porsche 1m49.035s 9.841s
48 GTD D.O'Young, M.Lira, M.Basseng, C.De Phillippi, N.M.-Melnhof Muehlner Motorsports America Porsche 1m49.291s 10.097s
49 GTD B.Keating, D.Farnbacher, A.Carter, K.Wittmer, C.Lawrence Riley Motorsports Dodge 1m49.512s 10.318s
50 GTD M.Marsal, M.Palttala, A.Priaulx, B.Said Turner Motorsport BMW 1m50.213s 11.019s
51 GTD D.Faulkner, K.Giermaziak, M.Skeen, R.Butcher, M.Avenatti GB Autosport Porsche
52 P S.Sharp, R.Dalziel, D.Hansson Tequila Patron ESM HPD
53 GTD D.DeBoer, M.Riddle, E.Salazar TRG-AMR

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