Richard Lietz and Gianmaria Bruni have claimed Porsche’s third consecutive GTE-Pro pole in FIA World Endurance Championship competition for Saturday’s 8 Hours of Bahrain.
The duo in the No. 91 Porsche 911 RSR combined for a best two-lap average of 1:56.485, outpacing their class championship-leading teammates Kevin Estre and Michael Christensen by 0.060 seconds.
It marked Lietz and Bruni’s second class pole in the last three races.
The pair of AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTEs qualified third and fourth in class, led by the No. 51 entry of James Calado and Alessandro Pier Guidi, who are looking to bounce back following exclusion from last month’s 4 Hours of Shanghai.
Aston Martin Racing struggled in the 20-minute session, with the No. 95 entry of Marco Sorensen and Nicki Thiim qualifying fifth, nearly one second adrift from the class pole-sitting Porsche after struggling on a flat-spotted tire.
The sister No. 97 entry, meanwhile, will start last after Maxime Martin’s time was deleted due to exceeding track limits.
Team Project 1 on GTE-Am Pole
Ben Keating claimed his first career WEC class pole, teaming with Larry ten Voorde in the No. 57 Team Project 1 Porsche for top qualifying honors.
The duo will be joined by Keating’s longtime co-driver Jeroen Bleekemolen in the race.
The No. 54 AF Corse Ferrari qualified second in class, followed by the No. 88 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche, which features Khaled al Qubaisi this weekend.
In addition to Martin’s issue, a number of other laps were deleted due to track limits violations.
The 8 Hours of Bahrain gets underway Saturday at 3 p.m. local time.