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Nasr Grabs Petit Le Mans Pole

Felipe Nasr beats Acura’s Ricky Taylor to pole for Motul Petit Le Mans…

Photo: Jake Galstad/IMSA

Felipe Nasr put the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R on pole position for tomorrow’s Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.

The Brazilian driver confirmed himself at the front of the grid with a record-breaking time of 1:08.457 set with eight minutes of the 15-minute prototype qualifying session remaining.

Nasr, who is sharing the Action Express Racing-run Cadillac DPi with Eric Curran and last year’s pole-sitter Pipo Derani, previously topped two of the four practice sessions held on Thursday and Friday.

The ex-Formula 1 driver will share the front row of the grid for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season finale with Acura Team Penske’s Ricky Taylor.

Taylor initially went third-quickest behind his Acura ARX-05 teammate Dane Cameron, before an improvement from Filipe Albuquerque set the two AXR Cadillacs from Mustang Sampling and Whelen above the Penske cars.

But Taylor persisted and eventually shaved down his best time in the No. 7 Acura DPi to a 1:08.598, beating Albuquerque by 0.031 seconds.

Cameron, who is aiming to clinch the DPi drivers’ title with Juan Pablo Montoya, will start from fourth, ahead of the two Team Joest Mazda DPi cars.

Timo Bernhard set the No. 77 Mazda RT24-P in fifth with a time of 1:08.847, in front of Harry Tincknell in the No. 55 machine.

The two Mazda DPis will start ahead of two rows’ worth of Cadillac DPi machinery, with Simon Trummer putting the No. 84 JDC-Miller Motorsports car in seventh ahead of Wayne Taylor Racing’s Renger van der Zande.

The DPi order was rounded out by Spencer Pigot for Juncos Racing, Misha Goikhberg in the second JDC-Miller entry, and Jon Bennett in the CORE autosport Nissan DPi.

Pole in the LMP2 category went to Kyle Masson, who won an entertaining dice with Matt McMurry that lasted the length of the session.

Masson put the Performance Tech Motorsports Oreca 07 Gibson on pole by 0.131 seconds from the Oreca run by PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports.

Motul Petit Le Mans is set to get underway at 12:05 p.m. ET with live coverage on NBC.

RESULTS: Qualifying

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365, covering the FIA World Endurance Championship, Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, among other series.

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