Neel Jani and Nick Tandy took their #1 Porsche 919 Hybrid to pole position for tomorrow’s 6 Hours of Bahrain WEC race. Not only is it the final race of the season, but also the last race we will see Porsche as an LMP1 Manufacturer.
The pair set a combined time of 1:39,383 following a last minute decision to send Tandy back out to improve on his time following a blistering 1:39.084 lap by Jani.
“We only went back out because Neel did such a good lap,” Tandy said. “I made a big mistake on the my flying lap, luckily I could correct it later. It’s a good start to our final weekend.”
The #7 Toyota TS050 HYBRID was qualified by Jose Maria Lopez and Mike Conway and will slot in next to the Porsche on the front row following an average time of 1:39.646. The #2 Porsche and the #8 Toyota start third and fourth respectively.
In the LMP2 class, the #36 Signatech Alpine took the class pole with Gustavo Menezes and Andre Negrao combining to clock in a 1:47.227 combined lap time. The extra for pole point keeps Menezes mathematically in the title fight, albeit a distant 22 points behind and needing not just a win but both the #38 Jackie Chan DC Racing and #31 Rebellion ORECAs to finish way down the points.
However, with the #38 Jackie Chan DC Racing 07 Gibson lining up second Menezes chances don’t look too promising at the moment. The #31 Vaillante Rebellion ORECA of Julien Canal, Nicolas Prost and Bruno Senna starts third in class.
In GTE, the Sam Bird and Davide Rigon took their #71 AF Corse Ferrari to pole position setting an average of 1:56.033, almost a second quicker than last year’s Pro pole time
Lining up second will be the #97 Aston Martin Vantage in its final GTE Pro outing. Darren Turner and Jonny Adam clocked in a 1:56.372, three tenths behind the Ferrari. Third place is taken by the first of the championship challengers as Andy Priaulx and Harry Tincknell set a 1:56.463.
Aston Martin Racing scored a crucial extra point for the #98 car when Paul Dalla Lana and Pedro Lamy set a 2:00.111 combined time giving the car its seventh pole of the season. The crew of the #98 V8 Vantage are now 11 points clear at the head of the standings needing to finish fourth or better to seal the championship.
The Clearwater Racing Ferrari will start second, two tenths adrift of the Pole time, while the #77 Dempsey Proton Porsche 911 will start third.