Pole qualifier time disallowed at Texas

FORT WORTH, Tex. (March 3, 2001) -- Rinaldo Capello inherited the pole position for Sunday's American Le Mans Series Grand Prix of Texas Saturday after the time of apparent pole winner Frank Biela was disallowed because of a technical violation.

FORT WORTH, Tex. (March 3, 2001) -- Rinaldo Capello inherited the pole position for Sunday's American Le Mans Series Grand Prix of Texas Saturday after the time of apparent pole winner Frank Biela was disallowed because of a technical violation.

In a post-qualifying inspection, series officials discovered that the Audi R8 Prototype of Biela contained a rear diffuser that exceeded the maximum height allowed by rules. Biela's apparent pole winning speed was disallowed, moving second-fastest qualifier and Audi teammate Capello to the top starting spot.

Capello, who will co-drive with Tom Kristensen, turned the 2.324-mile Texas Motor Speedway circuit at an average speed of 109.580 mph (1:16.350), earning the top starting spot for the two hour, 45-minute sports car endurance race. Biela and co-driver Emanuele Pirro are the race's defending champions.

Canadian Ron Fellows turned a fast lap of 99.644 mph in the final moments of qualifying to lead the GTS class in a Chevrolet Corvette C5-R. Fellows, who knocked fellow Corvette driver Andy Pilgrim off the top spot, will co-drive with Johnny O'Connell in Sunday's race.

"Andy cut a pretty good lap for us to go for," said Fellows. "We made some quick changes to the car with only four minutes to go. The car was very slippery; we never felt like we got it right."

In the GT class, Lucas Luhr of Monaco turned the fastest speed of 97.678 mph in a Porsche 911 GT3 RS. As was the case in the Prototype and GTS classes, Luhr's fast lap occurred at the end of the session. Steve Knight, driving a Lola B2K/Nissan, was the fastest in the new Prototype 675 class with a lap of 95.297 mph.

Sunday's race starts at 1 p.m. (CST) and will be televised live on the Speedvision Network.

-TMS

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Series ALMS
Drivers Rinaldo Capello , Tom Kristensen , Frank Biela , Ron Fellows , Johnny O'Connell , Andy Pilgrim , Lucas Luhr , Steve Knight , Emanuele Pirro