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Aston Martin Locks Out GTE Qualifying in Sao Paulo

Aston Martin Racing takes GTE-Pro, GTE-Am poles at Interlagos…

Photo: Drew Gibson/AMR

Photo: Drew Gibson/AMR

Aston Martin Racing swept GTE qualifying honors for the fourth consecutive FIA WEC race, with the No. 97 Vantage V8 (GTE-Pro) and No. 98 entry (GTE-Am) claiming class poles for Sunday’s season-ending Six Hours of Sao Paulo.

Darren Turner and Stefan Muecke combined for a four-lap average of 1:30.111, outpacing the No. 92 Porsche Team Manthey Porsche 911 RSR of Fred Makowiecki and Patrick Pilet by 0.148 seconds.

It marked the No. 97 car’s third straight pole as they search for their second class victory of the season on Sunday.

The No. 99 Craft-Bamboo-backed Aston of Darryl O’Young and Fernando Rees will start third in class, narrowly ahead of the GTE-Am class pole-sitting No. 98 Aston of Pedro Lamy and Christoffer Nygaard.

With the newly crowned GTE-Am class championship-winning No. 95 car of Nicki Thiim and David Heinemeier Hansson in second, it put four Aston Martins in the top-five of GTE overall.

The pair of GTE-Pro class AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italias struggled in the 25-minute session, and will line up fifth and sixth in class, with champions Gianmaria Bruni and Toni Vilander only able to muster a 1:30.908 average.

AF’s two GTE-Am Ferraris, meanwhile, will start third and fourth in class, with the No. 81 entry edging out the No. 61 car, driven this weekend by Emerson Fittipaldi, Jeff Segal and Alessandro Pier Guidi.

The session was red flagged with less than three minutes remaining due to the No. 75 ProSpeed Competition Porsche 911 RSR, which stopped on track.

While the clock stopped and the session resumed moments later, only a handful of cars returned to the track to complete an additional lap.

The FIA WEC Six Hours of Sao Paulo takes the green Sunday at 1 p.m. local (10 a.m. ET)

RESULTS: Qualifying

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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