Nick Tandy secured pole position at Kyalami for Frikadelli Racing on Friday afternoon, narrowly beating Christopher Haase in the 15-minute Pole Shootout session.
The Brit shares the No. 31 Porsche 911 GT3 R with Mathieu Jaminet and Intercontinental GT Challenge powered by Pirelli championship contender Dennis Olsen, who sits ten points behind Maxi Buhk in the standings heading into Saturday’s season finale.
The pole position came despite a scare during Qualifying 3 earlier in the afternoon when Tandy slid off track in wet conditions into the tire barrier.
He managed to get the car back to the pits under its own steam and back out on track to set a lap time after a brief time in the pits for repairs.
This was enough to send the car through to the Pole Shootout, which was made up of the top ten cars from qualifying, decided by an average of all three drivers’ lap times.
Haase’s Audi Sport Team Land car will start from second courtesy of a time just 0.045 seconds slower than Tandy’s 1:52.825.
Raffaele Marciello qualified third in the GruppeM Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 in another comeback story after an overnight repair job was carried out on that car. Marciello shares the No. 999 entry with points leader Buhk as well as Maro Engel.
Richard Lietz took GPX Racing’s Porsche to fourth, ahead of Dinamic Motorsport’s similar car, qualified by Matt Campbell.
South African driver Sheldon van der Linde set the sixth best time for BMW Team Schnitzer after going quickest in Night Practice on Thursday evening.
The top ten was completed by Jake Dennis, Bertrand Baguette, Maxi Goetz and Josh Burdon, all in different machinery.
It means that seven manufacturers will be represented in the top ten grid positions on Saturday: Porsche, Audi, Mercedes-AMG, BMW, Aston Martin, Honda and Nissan.
The remainder of the grid, from positions 11 back and including class polesitters in Silver, Pro-Am, Am and National classes, was determined with results from qualifying.
The Kyalami 9 Hour gets underway on Saturday at 1 p.m. local time (6 a.m. EST / 11 a.m. GMT).
RESULTS: Pole Shootout