Both Audi cars on front row at Austin

Audi No. 7 takes pole
Audi No. 7 takes pole

For the fourth time this year and for the third time in succession Audi has achieved the best starting base: the two Audi R18 cars locked out the front row of the grid for round six of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC).

As previously at Silverstone and the Nurburgring, car number 7 was unbeatable in qualifying. Marcel Fassler/Andre Lotterer/Benoit Treluyer (CH/D/F) will be starting the race at Austin (Texas) on Saturday from pole position. "The car felt great," said Lotterer, who set the fastest single time of 1m 45.703s. "This is fantastic for the whole squad that has been working hard lately." Marcel Fassler completed the result — number 7 posted the best time of all entrants at 1m 45.842s. "Our Audi simply felt perfect in all turns. That was huge fun," said the Swiss.

The number 8 sister car had to admit defeat by a very narrow margin, as Lucas di Grassi/Loic Duval/Oliver Jarvis (BR/F/GB) were lacking only 141 thousandths of a second in the end. "We were the fastest in all three free practice sessions," said Oliver Jarvis. "Obviously, we’d have liked standing in front again as we previously did in Mexico, but I just didn’t catch a clear lap." Loic Duval, who achieved the second-best single time of all drivers, added: "Unfortunately, we had a little too much understeer. For the team it’s great that both Audi cars are at the very front. Now it’s about being top-class in the race as well."

Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich was happy about the performance shown by his squad: "The fourth pole position in the sixth race shows how fast the Audi R18 is in its current version. Congratulations to our drivers who have achieved this result. We have an important and difficult race before us. A victory would be a sweet reward for the hard work of the entire team."

Stefan Dreyer, Head of LMP at Audi Sport, emphasizes how hard the conditions at the Circuit of the Americas were: "We had air temperature of 35 degrees centigrade and tarmac of 45 degrees in qualifying. It was simply great to see how good our drivers were in these difficult conditions. I also take my hat off to the performance of the whole team because especially the last few days were hard work. We were in front in each session. Now we’re going to leave no stone unturned to be there on Saturday as well."

[adinserter name="GOOGLE AD"]The two Porsche 919 Hybrids will start from positions three and five on the grid for the sixth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) in Austin, Texas. The reigning world champions, Timo Bernhard (DE), Brendon Hartley (NZ) and Mark Webber (AU), qualified in third. The current championship leaders, Romain Dumas (FR), Neel Jani (CH) and Marc Lieb (DE), will start the six-hour race from fifth on the grid, after having lost one position when Dumas’ fastest lap time was taken away because of exceeding track limits. Audi took the front row.

The race at the 5.513 kilometre long Formula One circuit will start on Saturday at 17:00 hrs local time (midnight in central Europe). It is expected to be a tough battle for men and machines: Ambient temperatures are clearly over 30 degree Celsius and it is an extra challenge to race from daylight through twilight into the dark – and all this in a very competitive environment in the battle for the championship and with heavy traffic, in which the fast Le Mans Prototypes have to find their way to constantly lap slower GT cars.

In the WEC the average of the respective best laps of two drivers counts for the grid position. In Texas Bernhard/Hartley (car number 1, position 3, 1:46.560 minutes) and Dumas/Jani (car number 2, position 5, 1:47.331 minutes) were the qualifying drivers.

The 6-hour race will start on Saturday at 17:00 local time. TV channel Eurosport will be airing live full-length-coverage during the night from Saturday to Sunday from 00:00 to 06:15 (CEST) in Germany. Audi will be keeping its fans up to speed on Facebook (AudiSport) and Twitter (@audisport).

Qualifying results

Pos No. Cat Driver Car Driver 1 Driver 2 Laps Average Gap
1 7 LMP1 Marcel FASSLER, Andre LOTTERER, Benoit TRELUYER Audi R18 1:45.798 1:45.703 2 1'45.750 +0.000s
2 8 LMP1 Lucas DI GRASSI, Loic DUVAL, Oliver JARVIS Audi R18 1:45.885 1:46.082 2 1'45.983 +0.233
3 1 LMP1 Timo BERNHARD, Mark WEBBER, Brendon HARTLEY Porsche 919 Hybrid 1:46.527 1:46.593 2 1'46.560 +0.810
4 6 LMP1 Stéphane SARRAZIN, Mike CONWAY, Kamui KOBAYASHI Toyota TS050 – Hybrid 1:46.953 1:47.484 2 1'47.218 +1.468
5 2 LMP1 Romain DUMAS, Neel JANI, Marc LIEB Porsche 919 Hybrid 1:46.071 1:48.591 2 1'47.331 +1.581
6 5 LMP1 Anthony DAVIDSON, Sébastien BUEMI, Kazuki NAKAJIMA Toyota TS050 – Hybrid 1:47.077 1:50.091 2 1'48.584 +2.834
7 13 LMP1 Mathéo TUSCHER, Dominik KRAIHAMER, Alexandre IMPERATORI Rebellion R-One – AER 1:53.650 1:53.642 2 1'53.646 +7.896
8 4 LMP1 Simon TRUMMER, Oliver WEBB, CLM P1/01 – AER 1:55.086 1:54.069 2 1'54.577 +8.827
9 36 LMP2 Gustavo MENEZES, Nicolas LAPIERRE, Stéphane RICHELMI Alpine A460 – Nissan 1:56.140 1:55.645 2 1'55.892 +10.142
10 44 LMP2 Matthew RAO, Richard BRADLEY, Roberto MERHI Oreca 05 – Nissan 1:56.195 1:57.551 2 1'56.873 +11.123
11 43 LMP2 Ricardo GONZALEZ, Filipe ALBUQUERQUE, Bruno SENNA LIGIER JS P2 – Nissan 1:55.754 1:58.980 2 1'57.367 +11.617
12 42 LMP2 Nick LEVENTIS, Lewis WILLIAMSON, Jonny KANE Gibson 015S – Nissan 1:57.914 1:57.158 2 1'57.536 +11.786
13 35 LMP2 David CHENG, Ho-Pin TUNG, Nelson PANCIATICI Alpine A460 – Nissan 1:59.433 1:56.687 2 1'58.060 +12.310
14 37 LMP2 Vitaly PETROV, Kirill LADYGIN, Victor SHAITAR BR01 – Nissan 1:59.040 1:57.719 2 1'58.379 +12.629
15 31 LMP2 Ryan DALZIEL, Luis Felipe DERANI, Christopher CUMMING LIGIER JS P2 – Nissan 1:56.759 2:00.029 2 1'58.394 +12.644
16 27 LMP2 Nicolas MINASSIAN, Maurizio MEDIANI, BR01 – Nissan 1:58.461 1:59.077 2 1'58.769 +13.019
17 30 LMP2 Scott SHARP, Ed BROWN, Johannes VAN OVERBEEK LIGIER JS P2 – Nissan 2:04.036 1:57.227 2 2'00.631 +14.881
18 26 LMP2 Roman RUSINOV, René RAST, Alex BRUNDLE Oreca 05 – Nissan 1:57.208 1 1'57.208 +11.458

GTE

Pos No. Cat Driver Car Driver 1 Driver 2 Laps Average Gap
1 95 LMGTE Pro Nicki THIIM, Marco SØRENSEN, Aston Martin Vantage V8 2:04.579 2:04.641 2 2'04.610 +0.000s
2 71 LMGTE Pro Davide RIGON, Sam BIRD, Ferrari 488 GTE 2:04.549 2:04.756 2 2'04.652 +0.042
3 66 LMGTE Pro Stefan MÃœCKE, Olivier PLA, Ford GT 2:04.557 2:05.051 2 2'04.804 +0.194
4 51 LMGTE Pro Gianmaria BRUNI, James CALADO, Ferrari 488 GTE 2:04.525 2:05.118 2 2'04.821 +0.211
5 97 LMGTE Pro Darren TURNER, Fernando REES, Aston Martin Vantage V8 2:05.084 2:04.695 2 2'04.889 +0.279
6 67 LMGTE Pro Marino FRANCHITTI, Andy PRIAULX, Harry TINCKNELL Ford GT 2:04.902 2:05.213 2 2'05.057 +0.447
7 77 LMGTE Pro Richard LIETZ, Michael CHRISTENSEN, Porsche 911 RSR (2016) 2:05.527 2:06.593 2 2'06.060 +1.450
8 98 LMGTE Am Paul DALLA LANA, Pedro LAMY, Mathias LAUDA Aston Martin Vantage V8 2:06.999 2:08.368 2 2'07.683 +3.073
9 88 LMGTE Am Khaled AL QUBAISI, David HEINEMEIER HANSSON, Kevin ESTRE Porsche 911 RSR 2:07.282 2:09.309 2 2'08.295 +3.685
10 78 LMGTE Am Christian RIED, Wolf HENZLER, Joël CAMATHIAS Porsche 911 RSR 2:08.362 2:09.270 2 2'08.816 +4.206
11 86 LMGTE Am Michael WAINWRIGHT, Adam CARROLL, Ben BARKER Porsche 911 RSR 2:07.061 2:11.178 2 2'09.119 +4.509
12 83 LMGTE Am François PERRODO, Emmanuel COLLARD, Rui AGUAS Ferrari F458 Italia 2:08.575 2:09.799 2 2'09.187 +4.577
13 50 LMGTE Am Lars VILJOEN, Pierre RAGUES, Ricky TAYLOR Chevrolet Corvette C7-Z06 2:06.986 2:11.394 2 2'09.190 +4.580

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