Front row start for Muscle Milk Pickett Racing at Road Atlanta

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Braselton, GA (October 19, 2012) - Muscle Milk Pickett Racing will be starting from the front row for Saturday's running of Petit Le Mans, the final round of the 2012 American Le Mans Series season.

#6 Muscle Milk Pickett Racing HPD ARX-03a Honda: Lucas Luhr, Klaus Graf, Romain Dumas
#6 Muscle Milk Pickett Racing HPD ARX-03a Honda: Lucas Luhr, Klaus Graf, Romain Dumas

Photo by: Eric Gilbert

The team placed second on the grid after what was a heated battle with Rebellion Racing, only a few tenths short of securing a sixth consecutive pole position this year.

Lucas Luhr, who was in charge of qualifying duties around the 2.54-mile track, immediately went to the top of the charts with a flying lap of one minute 10.406 seconds.

Knowing that it would take much more than that to remain atop the timing sheet, the German registered what was at that moment the fastest lap of the weekend with a time of one minute 9.667 seconds. But shortly thereafter, Luhr was relegated to second when the Rebellion car of Neel Jani took over the provisional pole.

That wasn't the end of it though, as Luhr quickly replied with a faster lap of one minute 9.428 seconds, only to be sent back to second place following a lap by Jani that was 0.339 seconds quicker than the Muscle Milk HPD ARX-03a's fastest lap.

While Luhr tried his hardest to regain the top spot, the Muscle Milk squad had to settle for a second place start, ahead of their Championship rivals Dyson Racing.

Muscle Milk Pickett Racing needs to complete 70% of the race distance on Saturday - 1000 miles or 10 hours, whichever comes first - to clinch what would be their first Championship title.

The 2012 Petit Le Mans will be streamed live on ESPN3.com from 11:30 a.m. ET on Saturday, October 20 and will be broadcast on tape-delay on ABC Sunday, October 21 from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. ET.

Muscle Milk Quotes

Lucas Luhr, #6 Muscle Milk HPD ARX-03a "All week long we've had a very good car but we were not quite there yet, however, this morning the car was already better and we made some more changes and adjustments that Brandon (Fry) our engineer came up with and I have to say that was the best car I've driven all week long.

"I think it was a very good lap time on my side. I had a little bit of traffic but honestly I couldn't do a nine flat, maybe a 9.2. I'm confident that we have a very good race car. The car is really fun to drive and the track here is special.

"We need to forget a little bit about everybody else, focus on us right now, do our race preparation, forget where the Rebellion is, the Dysons and just focus on what we have to do to get to 70% of the race and then we can push even harder to the end.

"We have to keep the big picture in mind and I think we have the right weapon to do it."

Klaus Graf, #6 Muscle Milk HPD ARX-03a "We start second, it's still on the first row and it's a long race so we shouldn't worry too much about that. Lucas put in a great performance and in qualifying we improved the car a lot. He did a perfect, fantastic lap. I think he was a bit unlucky with traffic and could have been even closer to the 12 car.

"We made a lot of progress, we prepared well for the race. The guys have done an awesome job with the car. We haven't had any issues so far and that's what we have to keep doing tomorrow.

"Everybody is looking forward to the race, the weather is beautiful and we have great fans, so what can I say, we just have to bring it home."

Romain Dumas, #6 Muscle Milk HPD ARX-03a "So far everything has been going very well for us. We've had a good week until now and we hope it continues this way. Lucas did a great job in qualifying and to be starting second in such a long race isn't that important.

"As for me, I immediately felt comfortable in the Muscle Milk HPD ARX-03a and I quickly got up to speed. It's great to be back with Muscle Milk Pickett Racing and I can't wait for the race on Saturday. The team needs to finish 70% of the race to win the Championship, so we're focused on that and then we can fight to the finish."

Source: Muscle Milk Pickett Racing

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About this article
Series ALMS
Article type Qualifying report
Tags dumas, graf, honda, hpd, luhr, muscle milk, petit le mans, pickett, road atlanta

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