Audi wins pole at Laguna Seca

MONTEREY, Calif. -- Rinaldo Capello of Italy blazed to a Laguna Seca Raceway track qualifying record Saturday in winning the pole position for Sunday's American Le Mans Series GlobalCenter Sports Car Championships endurance race. In turning a ...

MONTEREY, Calif. -- Rinaldo Capello of Italy blazed to a Laguna Seca Raceway track qualifying record Saturday in winning the pole position for Sunday's American Le Mans Series GlobalCenter Sports Car Championships endurance race.

In turning a record speed of 107.384 mph in an Audi R8 Prototype, Capello knocked Denmark's Jan Magnussen off of the provisional pole that he had earned on Friday. Magnussen dropped to the second starting position in a Panoz LMP-1 Roadster after running a fast lap of 107.214 in final qualifying.

"We improved the car a great deal from yesterday," said Capello, who has been the driver for three of Audi's eight pole positions this season. "We had too much understeer yesterday, and we improved the front grip. I was a little concerned because I only had two laps of practice this morning, and I wasn't sure how much I could push the car."

The pole was the seventh consecutive in the ALMS for Audi, which has also won five straight races. Capello will co-drive with Scotland's Allan McNish in the two-hour, 45-minute race on the 2.238-mile circuit, while Magnussen's teammate will be Australia's David Brabham.

Frank Biela of Monaco and Emanuele Pirro of Italy will start third in an Audi R8, with JJ Lehto of Finland and Jorg Muller of Monaco fourth in a BMW V12 LMR. Johnny O'Connell of Flowery Branch, Ga., and Japan's Hiroki Katoh start fifth in a Panoz LMP-1.

Ron Fellows of Canada and Andy Pilgrim of Cooper City, Fla., retained their pole position in the GTS class in a Corvette C5-R, as did GT class leaders Sascha Maassen of Germany and Bob Wollek of France in a Porsche 911 GT3 R.

Driver Zak Brown of Indianapolis suffered a back sprain when his Porsche impacted a retaining wall in turn seven during qualifying. He was examined and released from the track's care center.

MONTEREY, Calif. -- Starting lineup for Sunday's American Le Mans Series GlobalCenter Sports Car Championships at 2.238-mile Laguna Seca Raceway showing driver, hometown or country, type car, qualifying speed in miles per hour and winning time:

<pre> 1. Rinaldo Capello, Italy; Allan McNish, Scotland; Audi R8, 107.384, 1:15.028 (track record; breaks previous record of 1:15.219 set by Jan Magnussen on 10/13/00). 2. Jan Magnussen, Denmark; David Brabham, Australia; Panoz LMP-1, 107.214. 3. Emanuele Pirro, Italy; Frank Biela, Monaco; Audi R8, 106.258. 4. JJ Lehto, Finland; Jorg Muller, Monaco; BMW V12 LMR, 105.959. 5. Johnny O'Connell, Flowery Branch, Ga.; Hiroki Katoh, Japan; Panoz LMP-1; 105.714. 6. Jean-Marc Gounon, France; Bill Auberlen, Redondo Beach, Calif., BMW V12 LMR, 105.471. 7. Mimmo Schiattarella, Monaco; Didier de Radigues, Monaco; Lola B2K; 105.465. 8. Guy Smith, England; Stefan Johansson, Indianapolis; Reynard 2KQ, 104.934. 9. Jon Field, Dublin, Ohio; Rick Sutherland, Los Gatos, Calif.; Lola B2K, 102.574. 10. Max Angelelli, Monaco; Wayne Taylor, Altamonte Springs, Calif.; Cadillac Northstar LMP, 101.247. 11. Franz Konrad, Germany; Charlie Slater, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; Wido Rossler, Germany; Lola B2K, 100.431. 12. Ron Fellows, Canada; Andy Pilgrim, Cooper City, Fla.; Chevrolet Corvette C5-R, 96.508. 13. Kelly Collins, Corona del Mar, Calif., Justin Bell, England; Chris Kniefel, Cave Creek, Az., Chevrolet Corvette C5-R, 95.975. 14. Olivier Beretta, Monaco; Karl Wendlinger, Austria; Dodge Viper GTS-R, 95.752. 15. Terry Borcheller, Phoenix; Ron Johnson, Laguna Beach, Calif.; Tommy Kendall, Santa Monica, Calif.; Saleen S7, 95.375. 16. Martin Snow, Pleasant Grove, Utah; Gunnar Jeannette, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.; Lola B2K, 95.350. 17. Tommy Archer, Duluth, Minn.; David Donohue, Malvern, Penn.; Dodge Viper GTS-R, 95.341. 18. Milka Duno, Venezuela; Stephen Watson, South Africa; Dodge Viper GTS-R, 93.316. 19. Mel Hawkins, Houston; Steve Knight, Denver; Lola B2K, 93.198. 20. Zak Brown, Indianapolis; Vic Rice, San Rafael, Calif.; Porsche 911 Turbo; 92.493. 21. Sascha Maassen, Germany; Bob Wollek, France; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 92.171. 22. Lucas Luhr, Monaco; Dirk Muller, Monaco; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 91.994. 23. Randy Pobst, Melbourne, Fla.; Bruno Lambert, Belgium; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 91.775. 24. Tony Burgess, Canada; Christophe Bouchut; France; 91.067. 25. Brian Cunningham, Danville, Ky.; Nic Jonsson, Aliso Viejo, Calif.; BMW M3, 90.981. 26. Johannes van Overbeek, Oakland, Calif.; Peter Cunningham, West Bend, Wis.; BMW M3, 90.770. 27. Shane Lewis, Jupiter, Fla.; Darren Law, Phoenix; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 90.747. 28. Boris Said, Carlsbad, Calif.; Hans Stuck, Austria; BMW M3, 90.547. 29. David Murry, Atlanta; Johnny Mowlem, England; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 90.207. 30. Michael Peterson, Las Vegas, Nev.; Mike Fitzgerald, Atlanta; Cort Wagner, Santa Monica, Calif.; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 90.059. 31. Kevin Buckler, Sonoma, Calif.; Phillip Collin, Lincolnshire, Ill.; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 89.844. 32. Kyle Wankum, Canada; Craig Stanton, Long Beach, Calif.; Greg Doff, Canada; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 89.682. 33. Doc Bundy, Gainesville, Ga.; Rohan Skea, Australia; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 88.819. 34. Tom McGlynn, Orono, Minn.; Robert Orcutt, Santa Cruz, Calif.; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 88.106. 35. Leo Hindery, Hillsborough, Calif,; Peter Baron, Sunnyvale, Calif.; Porsche 911 GT3 R, 87.606. 36. David Lacey, Canada; Greg Wilkins, Canada; Porsche 911 Turbo, 86.484.

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Series ALMS
Drivers Nic Jönsson