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Derani on Sebring Pole; Two-Stage GTD Qualifying Debuts

Pipo Derani takes 12H Sebring pole as Jimmie Johnson crashes in Turn 17…

Photo: Mike Levitt/IMSA

Pipo Derani has claimed pole for the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring in a record-breaking qualifying lap by the No. 31 Action Express Racing Cadillac DPi.

NASCAR star Jimmie Johnson, meanwhile, crashed out in dramatic fashion in Turn 17 in the closing stages of the session.

Derani’s 1:45.354 edged out the Rolex 24 at Daytona-winning No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Acura ARX-05 of Ricky Taylor by 0.110 seconds. 

The two exchanged the top spot multiple times over the course of the 15-minute session, with Derani ultimately ending up quickest.

Renger van der Zande qualified third in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac followed by the No. 55 Mazda RT24-P of Oliver Jarvis and Olivier Pla’s Meyer Shank Racing Acura DPi.

Johnson, who spun over the bumps in Turn 17, climbed from the No. 48 Action Express-run Cadillac unaided following the accident. No word has been given on the status of the car, which h as sustained extensive damage.

Corvette Claims GTLM Pole Honors; Thomas, Lindh in LMP2, LMP3

Antonio Garcia scored pole in GT Le Mans in a Corvette Racing 1-2 in class.

The defending class champion in the No. 3 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R reeled off a 1:54.927 to edge out teammate Tommy Milner by 0.034 seconds.

Connor De Phillippi qualified third in the No. 25 Team RLL BMW M8 GTE followed by the sister BMW of Jesse Krohn.

The No. 79 WeatherTech Racing Porsche 911 RSR-19 of Cooper MacNeil got within 1.2 seconds of Milner’s class pole time in fifth.

Rasmus Lindh, meanwhile, claimed top qualifying honors in LMP3 in the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports Ligier JS P320 Nissan.

LMP2 pole honors went to the No. 11 WIN Autosport Oreca 07 Gibson of Steven Thomas, who edged out Ben Keating.

Lindh and the No. 7 Forty7 Motorsports Duqueine D08 Nissan of Oliver Askew were the only two LMP3 drivers to eclipse the times set by GTLM competitors.

Zimmermann, Hawksworth Quickest in Debut of Two-Stage GTD Qualifying

Tim Zimmermann qualified the No. 19 Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo on pole, with Vasser Sullivan’s Jack Hawksworth scoring maximum points in the second stage in the debut of the new GT Daytona class qualifying format.

Zimmermann and the No. 16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R of Jan Heylen exchanged the top spot multiple times in Q1, with the German’s 2:00.010 lap ending up enough for pole position.

Daniel Morad made a late-session improvement to qualify and start third in the No. 28 Alegra Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo.

Q2, reserved for pro drivers, saw Hawksworth record a 1:59.247 in the No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3 to outpace the No. 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R of Laurens Vanthoor by 0.370 seconds.

The Pfaff Porsche rebounded from ABS issues in Q1 when Zach Robichon was at the wheel.

Zimmermann’s co-driver Franck Perera scored third place qualifying points in Q2 in the Grasser Lamborghini, meanwhile.

The Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring gets underway Saturday at 10:10 a.m. ET with live coverage on NBCSN and IMSA Radio.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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