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Reinstated Lap Time Puts No. 92 Porsche on GTE-Pro Pole

Estre’s qualifying lap time deletion for track limits canceled after stewards’ check…

Photo: Porsche

The No. 92 Porsche 911 RSR-19 will start the 8 Hours of Bahrain from pole position in the GTE-Pro class after having a deleted qualifying lap time reinstated.

Michael Christensen and Kevin Estre initially finished second in Friday evening’s 20-minute two-driver qualifying session, while Nicki Thiim and Marco Sorensen provisionally took pole for Aston Martin Racing.

However, the reinstatement of an Estre lap time that was deleted for the Frenchman reportedly exceeding track limits gave the Porsche crew a better average score.

Thiim and Sorensen set an aggregate time of 1:56.521 against Estre and Christensen’s 1:56.589, putting a narrow margin of just 0.068 seconds between the two pairings.

But with Estre’s fastest lap of 1:56.774 being replaced by the reinstated time of 1:56.367, the No. 92 Porsche ended up with a quicker final average of 1:56.505.

The Porsche’s pole position is confirmed in the updated results table from qualifying, which shows the No. 95 Aston Martin Vantage GTE in second and the No. 51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE Evo of James Calado and Daniel Serra in third.

It marks the second time in three races that Estre and Christensen have achieved pole in this way. The 2018-19 world champions denied an Aston Martin front-row lockout when one of Estre’s deleted times from qualifying for the 6 Hours of Spa was restored.

AF Corse’s No. 54 GTE-Am Ferrari also had a deleted time reinstated, moving that entry up from sixth in class to fifth in between the two Team Project 1 Porsche 911 RSRs.

Additionally, the No. 88 Dempsey-Proton Racing and Gulf Racing Porsches have vaulted the No. 77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche which is now tenth in GTE-Am.

The LMP1 and LMP2 qualifying results have not changed following the stewards’ checks of reported track limits violations.

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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