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European Le Mans Series

Albuquerque Beats De Vries to Extend Pole Position Streak

Filipe Albuquerque takes another ELMS pole after qualifying battle with Nyck de Vries…

Photo: ELMS

Filipe Albuquerque’s remarkable European Le Mans Series qualifying form continued as the United Autosports driver earned his sixth consecutive LMP2 pole position at Monza.

Albuquerque beat G-Drive Racing’s Nyck de Vries by a narrow 0.093s margin to lead the 10-minute session and claim the top starting position for Sunday’s four-hour race.

This ensured the Portuguese driver’s fourth pole from the four rounds held so far this season, and maintained his 100 percent qualifying streak extending back to last year’s 4 Hours of Spa.

De Vries initially had the measure of Albuquerque after the first set of flying laps, courtesy of a 1:34.062 effort in the No. 26 Oreca-based Aurus 01 Gibson compared with Albuquerque’s 1:34.260 aboard the No. 22 Oreca 07 Gibson.

Both drivers then came in for fresh tires with Albuquerque posting his better time of 1:33.928 first.

De Vries responded shortly afterward, but his slight improvement to 1:34.021 wasn’t enough to end Albuquerque’s recent dominance in ELMS qualifying.

Konstantin Tereschenko improved late in the session to qualify third in the Duqueine Engineering Oreca.

The Russian driver’s time of 1:34.435 was enough to leapfrog Nicolas Lapierre’s best effort of 1:34.607 aboard the Oreca run by Cool Racing.

Will Owen was fifth in the other United Autosports Oreca, ahead of Graff driver Thomas Laurent and Algarve Pro Racing’s Jon Lancaster, whose Goodyear-shod car was the fastest non-Michelin runner.

Richard Bradley slotted into seventh for IDEC Sport, which has drafted in its sporting director Nicolas Minassian for Monza after Paul-Loup Chatin was ruled out of the event with a positive COVID-19 test result.

Boyd’s LMP3 Qualifying Form Continues

United Autosports driver Wayne Boyd took his third LMP3 class pole position in four rounds after an entertaining back-and-forth battle with RLR MSport’s Malthe Jakobsen.

Boyd and Jakobsen traded fastest laps throughout the session with the former’s 1:43.017 effort aboard the No. 2 Ligier JS P320 Nissan ultimately holding out as the best.

Jakobsen improved on his final attempt behind the wheel of the No. 15 Ligier but the Dane didn’t manage to undercut the time set by Boyd, who took pole by 0.261 seconds.

Laurents Hoerr recovered from a deleted fast lap time to qualify third in the DKR Engineering Duqueine D08 Nissan, while David Droux was fourth in Realteam Racing’s Ligier.

Quickest in GTE qualifying was Andrea Piccini, who became the fourth different class pole-sitter in as many races this season.

The driver of the No. 60 Iron Lynx Ferrari 488 GTE Evo set a time of 1:46.113 to edge out the two Proton Competition Porsche 911 RSRs that will start from second and third.

Richard Lietz got closest to Piccini in the No. 93 Proton car, but the Austrian fell 0.341 seconds short of snatching pole away.

Alessio Picariello qualified third, ahead of Spirit of Race Ferrari driver Matt Griffin and Rahel Frey in the other Iron Lynx Ferrari.

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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