Keen (Charleston, SC) had the controls of the WeatherTech Porsche for the 15-minute qualifying session. Under 95-degree temperatures and changing track conditions Keen and MacNeil worked with the AJR crew making adjustments right up to the qualifying session. A last minute tweak by the drivers and crew made the difference for Keen, who posted a time of 55.195 for the pole.
"I am pretty stoked to have the pole," Keen said. "We were struggling for grip all day. I have to hand it to the Alex Job guys, they worked really hard on the set-up. Phil (Pierce, crew chief) and the guys worked every session on the handling. We made one final adjustment on the car before qualifying, and that change gave me the confidence to get the time out of it. It is a short track, and we were able to put a solid two-tenths on second place, which is pretty good. Cooper will start from the front tomorrow. I didn't put many laps on the tires, so we will have a good car to start. Lime Rock has all right hand turns except one. So you set the car up differently. It is hot, and the track felt green all day. We squeezed all we could out of it, and we ended up with the best car on the day."
MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill) put in solid laps all day providing excellent feedback to the crew. The University of Colorado at Boulder student will have the controls of the WeatherTech Porsche for the start of tomorrow's two-hour-and-forty-five-minute race.
"My laps were good today," MacNeil said. "I was focused on going fast and watching my mirrors, this place is really busy with five classes running. We have a really good car. Leh put it on pole, and I will try to keep it up front at the start. It was hot today and the track is slippery, but working with the AJR guys we seem to have been one step ahead of the competition with our adjustments."
Alex Job, team owner, had his team chasing the track and set-up all day.
"Leh did a great job to put the car on pole," Job said. "He filled my ear with handling issues prior to qualifying and then sat down with Phil and Cooper and made another adjustment, and we just hit the sweet spot on the set-up. He went from being a little sour to hugging the crew. Cooper did a great job all day and provided some excellent feedback on a braking issue this morning that we were able to fix. Getting the pole on a hot day like today is a great reward for the team. We will see if we can parlay that into a win tomorrow."
Source: Alex Job Racing (AJR)