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Porsche Storms to GTLM Pole in Daytona

Porsches dominate GT qualifying at Daytona as Tandy takes GTLM pole and Pfaff prove quickest in GTD…

Photo: Porsche

Nick Tandy has given Porsche GT Team pole position in the GT Le Mans category for the Rolex 24 at Daytona as Porsche blitzed the production-based categories in qualifying for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season-opener.

Tandy was quick out of the gate in the No. 911 Porsche 911 RSR, setting an early benchmark of 1:42.773 before the two Porsches began exchanging fastest laps.

Laurens Vanthoor in the sister No. 912 Porsche enjoyed a brief moment at the top before Tandy bought the time down to a 1:42.207, which was enough to claim the GTLM pole despite a late challenge from Vanthoor who ended up 0.049 seconds behind.

Corvette Racing was the best of the rest with Antonio Garcia third in the No. 3 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R just over a tenth in front of the No. 4 Corvette of Tommy Milner.

Garcia improved on his time on his last flying lap to a 1:42.545 but it was not enough to knock either of the Porsches off the front row.

The No. 25 Team RLLL BMW M8 GTE of Philipp Eng was fifth followed by John Edwards in the No. 24 BMW and the No. 62 Risi Competitzione Ferrari 488 GTE Evo of Alessandro Pier Guidi rounded out the class.

Pier Guidi’s seventh place in class saw him finish almost 1.5 seconds off the pace in the seven-car class.

Robichon Takes GTD Pole for Pfaff

Pfaff Motorsports proved quickest in the GT Daytona class after Zach Robichon went more than four-tenths faster than the rest of the field.

Robichon set a 1:45.237 lap time, also a new GTD track record, in the No. 9 Porsche 911 GT3 R on his third flying lap to claim pole.

He ended up 0.476 seconds clear of Jeff Westphal’s second-placed No. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020.

Trent Hindman put Meyer Shank Racing’s No. 57 Acura NSX GT3 Evo third, while the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 of Robby Foley and Steijn Schothorst’s No. 11 Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo completed the top-five in class.

AIM Vasser Sullivan’s No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3, headlined by reigning NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Busch, missed qualifying due to a precautionary engine change.

The Rolex 24 at Daytona gets underway Saturday at 1:35 p.m. ET. 

RESULTS: Qualifying

Slade Perrins is an Australian-based junior reporter for Sportscar365. Perrins won the 2019 Virgin Australia Supercars 'Young Gun Award' for journalism for his work with speedcafe.com.

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