Nicki Thiim and Marco Sorensen have given Aston Martin Racing its first GTE-Pro class pole of the FIA World Endurance Championship season in a fraught qualifying session for Sunday’s 6 Hours of Circuit of The Americas.
The championship-leading duo combined for a best two-lap average of 2:00.733 in the No. 95 Aston Martin Vantage GTE.
It was 0.219 seconds quicker than the No. 92 Porsche 911 RSR of Kevin Estre and Michael Christensen, which will start second in class after a number of quick laps were deleted due to track limits.
The No. 97 Aston Martin of Maxime Martin and Alex Lynn was third, followed by the No. 91 Porsche, qualified by Richard Lietz and Gianmaria Bruni, in fourth and the No. 51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE completing the top-five in class.
All six full-season GTE-Pro entries were separated by less than a half-second in the hard-fought session.
The WEC debuting Chevrolet Corvette C8.R, meanwhile, qualified ninth overall among the GTE contenders and last in class, with Mike Rockenfeller and Jan Magnussen’s 2:02.967 average some 2.2 seconds slower than the pole-sitting Aston.
Team Project 1 Porsche on GTE-Am Pole
Matteo Cairoli and Egidio Perfetti grabbed GTE-Am class pole honors in the No. 56 Team Project 1 Porsche.
Their 2:02.784 average was just 0.046 seconds quicker than the No. 98 Aston Martin of Ross Gunn and Paul Dalla Lana, who is still nursing an ankle injury this weekend.
Cairoli and Perfetti will share driving duties of their Porsche with WEC debutant Laurents Hörr, who has replaced David Heinemeier Hansson for the remainder of the season.
The No. 77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche will start third in class after one of its best laps was also deleted in the session.
The 6 Hours of Circuit of The Americas gets underway Sunday at 12 p.m. local time.