Biela puts Le Mans-winning Audi on pole at Mid-Ohio. LEXINGTON, Ohio (June 29, 2002) -- Audi driver Frank Biela, two weeks after winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans for the third straight year, set a track record to take the pole position Saturday...
Biela puts Le Mans-winning Audi on pole at Mid-Ohio.
LEXINGTON, Ohio (June 29, 2002) -- Audi driver Frank Biela, two weeks after winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans for the third straight year, set a track record to take the pole position Saturday for Sunday's American Le Mans Series event at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
The German driver, who will co-drive in Sunday's sports car race with Emanuele Pirro of Italy, turned the 2.258-mile circuit in 1:14.169 (109.598 mph), beating the record lap of 109.057 mph that was set last year by Tom Kristensen. The Audi R8 Prototype that Biela and Pirro are using is the same car that won Le Mans.
"We had a great weekend at Le Mans, but that was two weeks ago and it's almost history now," said Biela. "We're back in America now and we're focused on winning more races and making up for the bad luck we had earlier this year in the series. The team worked hard to get the car ready for Mid-Ohio and hopefully it has more wins in it."
Jan Magnussen and David Brabham, winner of last year's American Le Mans race at Mid-Ohio as well as the most recent series event at California's Sears Point Raceway, qualified second in a Panoz LMP-1. The Panoz team car driven by Bryan Herta and Bill Auberlen was third, followed by the Audi of Kristensen and Rinaldo Capello.
Jon Field, who lives in nearby Dublin, Ohio, was the fastest qualifier in the LMP 675 class for smaller Prototypes with a lap of 1:16.559. He will co-drive with his 19-year-old son, Clint, in a Lola EX257-AER MG.
Ron Fellows of Canada won his third pole in three races this season in the GTS class, lapping the circuit in a Chevrolet Corvette C5-R at 1:22.066. He and co-driver Johnny O'Connell have won the GTS class in both events held this season, as well as in the recent 24 Hours of Le Mans. Fellows only turned three laps in the 20-minute qualifying session.
Sascha Maassen of Germany only needed two laps to win the pole in the GT class with a lap of 1:25.838. He will share a Porsche 911 GT3 RS with Lucas Luhr, the two having won the class in both ALMS races held this season.
The race will be televised live by SPEED Channel beginning at 2 p.m. (EDT). Live coverage by the American Le Mans Series Radio Web can be heard online at www.americanlemans.com.