Friday Qualifying: The quartet of BMW M3 GTRs will start in the second, third, fourth and sixth positions of the GT class for the two-hour-and-forty-five-minute American Le Mans Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio tomorrow. Today's late afternoon twenty...
The quartet of BMW M3 GTRs will start in the second, third, fourth and sixth positions of the GT class for the two-hour-and-forty-five-minute American Le Mans Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio tomorrow.
Today's late afternoon twenty minute qualifying session saw the No. 42 BMW Motorsport M3 GTR of JJ Lehto the quickest of the BMWs around the 2.25-mile Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course with a time of 1:24.459 -- just eight one-thousandths of a second off of the pole time of Sascha Maassen's Porsche (1:24.451). Only a quarter of a second separated the third quick No. 6 Team PTG M3 GTR of Boris Said (1:24.507) and the fourth fastest No. 43 BMW Motorsport M3 GTR of Fredrik Ekblom (1:24.756). The No. 10 Team PTG M3 GTR of Niclas Jönsson finished the session in sixth (1:25.124)
Boris Said, driver No. 6 PTG M3 GTR
"I put two good laps in, but the track was more slippery than this morning. I think there was a lot of rubber on the track from all the previous SCCA groups. Qualifying could not have been any closer. I'm happy to start third - we tried one more run at it, but the edge was off the tires - you have to get the quick one on your second or third lap."
Niclas Jönsson, driver No. 10 PTG M3 GTR
"It took a bit of time for the tires to come in and I also tried a few different things that I spoke to Boris about between practice and qualifying. I tried different gears in different corners and I think that will work well for the race. Bill usually qualifies and my role is to consistently quick in the race, but I'm only about one-half second off of Boris' time so I am pleased with that."
Tom Milner, owner Prototype Technology Group
"Six cars within six-tenths of a second and the top three within a half-a-hundredth is a tight qualifying session and will make for a very good race. We are pleased with third and sixth as we went out with our race set-up. I think our competition may pay a little more attention to qualifying than we do."
Tom Salkowsky, motorsports manager, BMW of North America, LLC
"The qualifying times here certainly reflects the competitiveness of the GT class. I can't remember a qualifying session with numbers this close in a very long time, but it is qualifying, not the race and there are not any extra points for the pole."