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Pirelli GT4 America

Pumpelly Beats Title Rival Cooper to Sprint Race 1 Pole

The three GT4 Sprint drivers’ championship hopefuls qualify first, second and third at Vegas…

Photo: Gavin Baker/SRO

Spencer Pumpelly beat championship leader Michael Cooper to pole position for the first of this weekend’s two Pirelli GT4 America Sprint races in Las Vegas.

Pumpelly shot to the top of the timing charts early in the Friday afternoon qualifying run and stayed out front despite improvements from his rivals behind.

The TRG Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport driver ended up taking pole with a time of 1:40.584, while Cooper slotted his Blackdog Speed Shop McLaren 570S GT4 into second on a 1:41.122.

McLaren factory driver Cooper tried to bridge the half-second gap to Pumpelly in the closing stages but was prevented from setting another quick time because of a front-left puncture.

Third on the grid for Saturday’s race will be Ian James, who set a time of 1:41.459 behind the wheel of his Panoz Avezzano GT4.

Cooper, Pumpelly and James are the three drivers’ championship protagonists heading into the final weekend of the season, with Cooper leading on 182.5 points ahead of Pumpelly on 175 and James on 174.

Fourth in qualifying was Practice 2 pace-setter Matt Brabham in the No. 20 CRP Racing Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR.

The third row of the grid will be taken up by Ford Mustang GT4 driver Shane Lewis and Jarett Andretti in a McLaren run by Andretti Autosport.

Lewis’ PF Racing teammate Jade Buford qualified seventh, while Am class pole-sitter Matt Travis lapped eighth overall in his NOLASPORT Porsche.

Race 1 for the GT4 Sprint field is set to get underway on Saturday at 2:40 p.m. PT.

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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