Faulkner gives TRG Porsche first GTC Pole for 2013
Austin, Texas – In a steady rain at the new Circuit of the Americas Formula 1 track, Daimien Faulkner (Ireland) brought TRG its first 2013 American Le Mans Series GT Challenge (GTC) pole position. Faulkner turned the fastest lap in his Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car for tomorrow’s ALMS event, part of the International Sports Car Weekend here.
CORE’s Porsche 911 GT3 RSR required a new tub after the Baltimore accident, while the Paul Miller Racing Porsche has many new front end parts. The Team Falken Tire crew was forced to go back into their garage and resurrect its 2010 Porsche for this event.
The American Le Mans Series race will be broadcast on ESPN3.com starting Saturday, September 21, at 4:30 PM Eastern time, with the TV broadcast on Sunday, September 22, at 1:00 PM Eastern.
Patrick Long was surprised at the consistent laps time of all the cars in the wet during the GT session.
“It was more like a dry qualifying session, because we were fishing for every hundredth. Usually in a wet qualifying, there’s lots of water so you’re inconsistent, or you have a drying track and you keep getting faster. This seemed to be a status quo qualifying session, which made it a mental battle between all the cars and drivers. In one frame of mind I’m disappointed to be fifth, in another I’m happy to be the ‘best of the rest’ behind the factory BMWs and Corvettes who are a couple seconds ahead. We’re in striking distance for the race, and we’re faster than we were in practice, so I think we’ll be alright,” said Long.
Bryan Sellers was disappointed in his position as the Falken Porsche has performed better in the rain, but he’s hoping overnight adjustments will improve their position during the race.
“We’ve been really good in the wet in the past but somehow we haven’t been able to get the balance right. On a track this long, when you fight for balance in a racecar it accumulates fast. That isn’t the qualifying session we wanted especially since it was wet and that has been our backbone. Hopefully we can rebound and have a better race tomorrow,” said Sellers.
Meanwhile, Faulkner and co-driver Ben Keating (Port Lavaca, Tex.) were thrilled to be on the GTC pole as the team has been fast all season, but luck has not been on their side.
“We have had a lot of pain this season, and our results have not reflected the effort this TRG team has put into our Porsche. It was not just a wet weather thing as we were fastest in the dry as well yesterday. We’re hoping that in tomorrow’s race, the TRG Porsche can show its true colors,” said Faulkner.
Sean Edwards (Great Britain) in the NGT Porsche was a mere six hundreths of a second behind Faulkner, qualifying second, while Jeroen Bleekemolen (Monaco), who leads the GTC class points with Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, IL) in the Alex Job Racing Porsche, qualified third.