Good starting position for Porsche at the Daytona 24 hour race: In qualifying for the sports car classic in Florida, Porsche pilots locked out the first four grid spots in a field of 36 vehicles entered in the GT class. Pole position went to Nick Tandy in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup fielded by Konrad Motorsport/Orbit. Daytona marks the first race for the Briton as a Porsche works driver. One of his teammates is Porsche Junior Michael Christensen (Denmark), who contests his first 24 hour race on Saturday.
“Pole position in Daytona shouldn’t be underestimated, even if the race runs over 24 hours,” said Nick Tandy. “Starting from the front allows you to avoid getting caught up in any skirmishes and that’s certainly an advantage. Our car ran perfectly and that gives us a good feeling for the race.”
In last year’s winning car with the starting number 44, Andy Lally (USA) set the second quickest qualifying time. Sharing the cockpit of the Magnus Racing 911 GT3 Cup is Porsche works driver Richard Lietz from Austria. Third in qualifying in the fiercely competitive qualifying session on the Daytona International Speedway, in which the eleven top placed cars are all within just one second, went to Sean Edwards (MOMO/NGT) from Great Britain ahead Porsche factory pilot Patrick Long (USA) competing for the Park Place Motorsports squad.
“We won the race last year. Second on the grid is an excellent starting position to repeat this success,” said Richard Lietz. Porsche works driver Patrick Pilet (France), one of Sean Edwards’ teammates, was also feeling optimistic. “Sean did an excellent job. After this great qualifying result we are all looking forward to the race. Our goal is to finish on the podium.”
The Daytona 24 Hours starts on Saturday at 15.30 hrs local time (21.30 hrs CET).
1. Nick Tandy (GB), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 1:47.631 minutes
2. Andy Lally (USA), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, + 0.197 seconds
3. Sean Edwards (GB), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, + 0.376
4. Patrick Long (USA), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, + 0.506
5. Alessandro Balzan (I), Ferrari 458, + 0.629
6. Felipe Albuquerque (MEX), Audi R8, + 0.651
7. Marco Seefried (D), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, + 0.688
8. Robin Liddell (GB), Camaro GT.R, + 0.699