Jaime Melo drove his No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 430 GT to a new qualifying lap record and GT2 pole position today although the record books will unfortunately not show either. IMSA officials deemed that qualifying was officially...
Jaime Melo drove his No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 430 GT to a new qualifying lap record and GT2 pole position today although the record books will unfortunately not show either.
IMSA officials deemed that qualifying was officially abandoned as less than ten minutes of the prototype session was run. A heavy accident involving the P2 Mazda Lola caused the session to be red-flagged, and officials decreed that the grid would be set using the combined fastest times from the practice sessions held over the last two days. As the no. 62 Risi Ferrari held that honor in GT2, Melo will still start from the front of his class.
The 25-minute GT qualifying session ran without problems, and the reigning GT2 ALMS Drivers Champion recorded his fastest time of 2:00.945 on just his third flying lap. He was pleased with his performance but felt there could have been more to come.
Jaime Melo: "It was a very good qualifying but actually my best lap could have been a little bit better. I had a big oversteer in the last corner and lost a couple of tenths of a second, maybe, but I'm happy with the car and I think we are in good shape for the race. We did a good job over the winter and we also made quite a lot of changes during this week, but today the car was okay. The tires that Michelin give us are very consistent, especially with our car, and that's very good for the race."
Tracy Krohn, who together with his Krohn Racing team mates Nic Jonsson and Eric van de Poele, has re-joined with Risi Competizione for the opening round of the 2008 ALMS, was the nominated 'qualifying' driver in the no. 61 Risi Krohn Ferrari 430. He set his best lap of the week in this afternoon's session, and will start from 11th place on the revised provisional grid.
He commented afterwards, "The thing about qualifying, although we didn't qualify quite as high as we wanted to, is we've got a car we can race without changing anything. This is a race set-up and I think the team will be very pleased with it. I know all the drivers will be pleased with it, so I'm looking forward to that. We've tried several things all week long and it looks like we've finally got it ironed out. The car is going to be very manageable and very drivable."
The 2008 American Le Mans Series season opens with the 56th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Fresh from Florida on Saturday, March 15. The race will start at 10 am ET and will be broadcast live by SPEED, which will begin its coverage at 9:30 am MotorsTV, Fox Latin America, 7TV in Russia and Greenlight Television will provide international coverage. American Le Mans Radio and IMSA's Live Timing & Scoring will be available at www.americanlemans.com