Le Mans Series press release
Simon Pagenaud takes pole on his first outing at Silverstone!
Simon Pagenaud took pole in his Peugeot 908 for the Autosport 6 Hours of Silverstone on his first outing on the famous English circuit. Despite uncertain weather conditions the Frenchman found the right window to set the fastest time in the session in front of Allan McNish and Stéphane Sarrazin. The other pole setters were: Danny Watts (LMP2), Phil Keen (FLM), Augusto Farfus (LM GTE Pro) and Nicolas Armindo (LM GTE Am).
LM P1: Peugeot beats Audi
Peugeot has topped all the practice sessions since the start of the weekend in the Autosport 6 Hours of Silverstone, and the French manufacturer continued its domination in qualifying. In changeable weather Simon Pagenaud chose the right moment to go out just before a drizzle dampened the track. The 2010 American Le Mans Series Champion clinched pole with a lap in 1m 43.924s in front of Allan McNish's no. 2 Audi R18 TDI (1m 44.856s) and the no.8 Peugeot 908 of his team-mate Stéphane Sarrazin (1m 45m 102s). It is Pagenaud's first pole on his first outing on the Silverstone circuit with the Peugeot team.
LM P2: Strakka Racing on home turf
Strakka Racing bagged pole in LM P2 in its home race thanks to Danny Watts. The Englishman went quickest at the end of the session with a lap in 1m 49.619s in the HPD ARX-01d. Into second and third came Tom Kimber-Smith (Greaves Motorsport) et Jody Firth (TDS Racing).
FLM : Neil Garner Motorsport leads the pack!
The British teams seemed to find that little bit of extra pace on home turf as Neil Garner Motorsport clinched first place in Formula Le Mans. After a cautious start Phil Keen went pedal to the metal and improved the pole time leaving it at 1m 58.143s.
LM GTE Pro: BMW double
After pole changed hands on several occasions, Augusto Farfus (no. 55 BMW Motorsport M3) topped the time sheets in 2m 01.768s beating the Porsches and Ferraris. His team-mate, Andy Priaulx (no. 56 BMW Motorsport M3) got round in 2m 02.096s to give the Munich manufacturer a double!
LM GTE Am: Armindo on top again
Nicolas Armindo (no. 67 IMSA Performance Matmut Porsche 997) bagged yet another pole in 2m 04.028s. He was under threat from Patrick Long (Proton Competition Porsche 997 in 2m 04.172s), but managed to find that extra bit of speed to set the fastest time in the category.
Simon Pagenaud: “It's amazing to set such a time on such a circuit on my first outing here. I love the string of quick corners like Becketts and Copse thanks to the aerodynamic downforce of our car. Pole was vital as in the race it'll be difficult to follow the cars in front because of the aero turbulence. The team sent me out at just the right moment on the right tyres because of the threat of rain.”
Danny Watts: “It's a big thrill for me to set pole here. Silverstone is really like home for me. I learned to drive here, I've lived here. It's also a good thing for Strakka Racing and for the championship, which is very close. The most important thing was to find a clear lap.”
Phil Keen : “Finding the limit on the circuit wasn't evident because of the rain, which was falling in some places and not in others on the circuit. I'm very happy with this result.”
Augusto Farfus: “We were off the pace at the start of the weekend and we gradually improved the car. It's a great reward for the whole team, but that was qualifying, not the race. It'll be long and full of surprises. If it starts to rain we know how to adapt.”
Nicolas Armindo: “This pole is good from a championship point of view as we're neck and neck with AF Corse. It's also good for me to be able to achieve such speed. Beating some of the GTE Pro teams isn't really my priority. Tomorrow our aim is to be as far in front of the no. 60 AF Corse Ferrari as possible!”
The start of the Autosport 6 Hours of Silverstone will be given on Sunday 11th September at 11h35, local time. Find all the results and information on www.lemans-series.com.