California 8 Hours: Haase puts Land Audi on pole
Christopher Haase will start the Audi Sport Team Land Audi R8 on pole for tomorrow’s California 8 Hours, the fourth and final round of the 2018 Intercontinental GT Challenge.
Haase, who also took pole for this event last year, left it until the last minute to edge Raffaele Marciello’s Strakka Racing Mercedes AMG GT3 by 0.068sec with a best time of 1min23.660sec, despite not being quickest in any of the three sectors around WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.
Dries Vanthoor was third fastest in the Audi Sport WRT R8 ahead of Luca Stolz’s SunEnergy1 Racing’s Mercedes.
Pat Long was fastest of the Porsche 911s – fifth overall yet only 0.188sec from pole – with ex-IndyCar racer Tristan Vautier sixth in the second SunEnergy1 Mercedes.
Romain Dumas was ninth in the Wright Motorsport Porsche 911 he’ll share with Dirk Werner and Frederic Makowiecki, while the three Bentley Continentals of Alvaro Parente, Andy Soucek and Steven Kane will line up in 11th, 12th and 14th.
The Vital Speed Motorsports Ferrari 488 to be shared by Marino Franchitti, Jeff Westphal and Trevor Baek, will start 13th.
The sole GTC entry, a Lamborghini Super Trofeo Huracan, run by US RaceTronics, was 17th overall, ahead of all the GT4 cars but behind the four GT3 Pro-Am entrants.
In the GT4 class, the line-up of Ian James, Preston Calvert and Matthew Keegan put the Panoz Avezzano on pole with by a resounding 0.458sec ahead of Murillo Racing’s Matthew Fassnacht and Christian Szymczak in the Mercedes AMG GT4.
That pair were just ahead of the Aston Martin Vantage of Automatic Racing, piloted by Charlie Putman, Eric Lux and Charles Espenlaub, and Scott Maxwell, Jade Buford and James Pesek in the PF Racing Ford Mustang.
The two TCR-class Hyundai i30s of Bryan Herta Autosport will line up 30th and 31st.
33 cars on entry list for California 8 Hours
California 8 Hours: Land Audi wins, Vautier clinches IGTC title