BMW Motorsport locks out GTE class front row at Silverstone.
Silverstone, 10th September 2011. Strong qualifying for BMW Motorsport at the classic “Silverstone Circuit” (GB): The squad secured GTE class pole position and second on the grid for Sunday’s six-hour race, round five of the 2011 Intercontinental Le Mans Cup (ILMC). Augusto Farfus (BR) put the no. 55 BMW M3 GT on pole, setting a time of 2:01.768 minutes. His team-mate and local hero, Andy Priaulx (GB), was just 0.328 seconds slower, claiming second on the grid.
Despite dark clouds and the threat of rain, BMW Team Schnitzer opted to wait before going out for its first and only run. With about eight minutes to go Farfus took to the track to start his flying lap. The Brazilian made full use of the additional rubber laid down by the other cars before securing pole position. Shortly afterwards Priaulx commenced his flyer. The triple world touring car champion lost some time when he hit traffic, but still his lap was good enough for a strong second place.
At Silverstone Farfus shares the wheel of the BMW M3 GT with Jörg Müller (DE). Priaulx will join forces with Uwe Alzen (DE) in Sunday’s race, which gets underway at 11:35hrs local time.
Charly Lamm (Team Manager): “This has been a strong performance from Augusto and Andy. This qualifying was the first test of strength following the long break – and we are on P1 and P2. In Imola we were really competitive. It’s great that we seem to be able to continue this trend here. We waited several minutes before joining the action, while most of our competitors were already out on the track. Some of them might have lost some time during a yellow. Fortunately it remained dry, so our drivers could set their impressive times. The forecast says changeable weather conditions for tomorrow, so it’s likely to rain. Therefore we need to do some intensive preparations in order to have the right set-up ready for whatever happens.”
Augusto Farfus (car number 55): “We knew that our car would be quick in qualifying after we did a lot of work yesterday to get the balance perfectly right. We did it! The forecast said no rain for qualifying, so we waited quite a while – and the track conditions got better and better. We went out at the right moment, and this strategy was excellent. It feels great to be on pole again.”
Andy Priaulx (car number 56): “I am really happy with that, but a bit frustrated that I was baulked on my fastest lap by traffic. However, to be on the front row with the other BMW M3 GT car is great. The car has a good potential and we all feel confident for tomorrow, but in a six-hour race anything can happen.”