STEVEN LAPORTE WILL START FROM THE POLE FOR SATURDAY'S HONDA MICHELIN SERIES MONTREAL RACE Montreal, Friday, June 10, 2005 - Steven Laporte of Sainte-Anne-des-Lace (QC) won the Honda/ Michelin Challenge Series pole for Saturday's Round 2 race to...
STEVEN LAPORTE WILL START FROM THE POLE FOR SATURDAY'S HONDA MICHELIN SERIES MONTREAL RACE
Montreal, Friday, June 10, 2005 - Steven Laporte of Sainte-Anne-des-Lace (QC) won the Honda/ Michelin Challenge Series pole for Saturday's Round 2 race to be held at le Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve in Montreal. The Lombardi Honda Racing Series driver posted the quickest lap of the 19-car field on the last lap of the 30-minute session, driving around the 4.361-km road course in 2 minutes 12.565 seconds for an average speed of 118.429 km/h. It's the defending champion first pole of the season, the fifth of his career. His time bettered the qualifying lap record by 4.999 seconds.
''We tried a different strategy during qualifying and it paid off,'' said Laporte who won last year's race in Montreal. ''I came into the pits around the halfway mark and my team changed all four tires for Michelin stickers. I went around the track twice to scrub them and then went for it for the next three laps. And it worked, we got the pole.''
Laporte will share the front row with Nick Wittmer of Hudson (QC) who was 0,024 seconds short of the pole with a lap time of 2:12.589 seconds. The Honda de Sigi Autosport driver held provisional pole until the final lap of the session when he was upstaged by Laporte.
''I though that I had the pole, but Steven (Laporte) bested my time on his last lap, said Wittmer. At the start of qualifying, I followed Laporte and Robert Boyer because they are quick. At each turn, I was gaining track position on them and that's when I made my quickest lap at mid-session. Starting on the front row is not a bad place to start the race. We'll see what gives when the red lights go off.''
Didier Schraenen of Mont-Saint-Hilaire (QC) qualified third with a best time of 2:12.865. The Energie/ NAPA/RDS driver was black-flagged during the session for short cutting the track and lost his best time. He will start next to Robert Boyer of Sainte-Anne-des-Lacs. The third row will be filled by the Pfaff Leasing Honda of Alex Penfold of Georgetown (ON) and the KelCoatings Honda of Ryan Kelly of London, Ontario.
Frederick Lelièvre of Mont-Joli (QC) finished seventh, followed by Emmanuel Boivin-Moreau of Longueuil and Kuno Wittmer of Hudson. Media guest driver Marc Lachapelle of Longueuil rounds out the Top-10.
Round 2 of the 2005 Honda/Michelin Challenge Series race, a 13-lap or 30-minute race, is scheduled to start Saturday at 2:30 p.m. immediately following the Formula 1 qualifying session.