Jarvis Scores Third Pole of Season
Oliver Jarvis has a knack for wringing every last bit of speed out of the No. 77 Mazda Team Joest RT24-P Daytona Prototype international (DPi) car, especially when there’s a Motul Pole Award on the line.
Jarvis broke a 26-year-old track record to take the pole position in qualifying for January’s Rolex 24 At Daytona. In qualifying for last month’s Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio, he broke the previous year’s track record by more than a second.
On Saturday at Watkins Glen International, Jarvis clocked a best lap of 1 minute, 29.639 seconds (136.547 mph) around the 3.4-mile circuit, breaking Pipo Derani’s previous track record of 1:34.405 set in 2017 by almost five seconds to take the pole for Sunday’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen. It was Jarvis’ third Motul Pole Award of the season.
“The car was just fantastic in qualifying when it mattered,” Jarvis said. “I just had so much confidence, I think the lower temperatures helped, but I just had so much confidence to push and attack. It was a real pleasure to drive.
Jarvis and co-drivers Tristan Nunez and Timo Bernhard will be fighting for Mazda’s first WeatherTech Championship DPi victory. That elusive first win for Mazda has been an ongoing storyline, one that Jarvis hopes to finally put to rest on Sunday afternoon.
“I’m looking forward to the day where we don’t have to discuss it,” Jarvis said. “We’re getting there. We’re going to win a race. It’s coming. I hope we can do it tomorrow. We have two very strong race cars. Qualifying is one thing, but we’ve also got a really strong race car. I’d like to say after this weekend, we don’t have to talk about it.”
Dane Cameron will start alongside Jarvis on the front row after posting a best lap of 1:29.862 (136.208 mph) in the No. 6 Acura Team Penske ARX-05 DPi. Cameron also started alongside Jarvis last month at Mid-Ohio, where he and co-driver Juan Pablo Montoya started what now is a two-race win streak. They’ll go for three in a row Sunday.
Ricky Taylor qualified third in the No. 7 Acura Team Penske ARX-05 DPi at 1:29.928 (136.108 mph) that he shares with Helio Castroneves. Harry Tincknell put the No. 55 Mazda DPi that he will co-drive with Jonathan Bomarito and Oliver Jarvis fourth on the grid at 1:29.983 (136.025 mph).
Renger van der Zande completed the top five on the grid with a lap of 1:30.758 (134.864 mph) in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R. Van der Zande’s co-driver is Jordan Taylor
In the LMP2 class, French driver Gabriel Aubry won his first Motul Pole Award in the No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA LMP2 with a lap of 1:31.735. His co-drivers are Matt McMurry and Eric Lux.
“It’s my first pole, indeed,” Aubry said. “It’s the only time I could come back since the pre-test (the Roar Before the Rolex 24 At Daytona in January) so I’m really happy. The lap wasn’t perfect but just the track is so amazing. It’s a great feeling. It’s my first time at Watkins Glen. It feels like you’re almost back in go-karts. It’s just a lot of fun to drive. The track has a lot of grip and the tires work so well.”
Garcia put Corvette on LMP2 pole
If Saturday’s qualifying session for the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen at Watkins Glen International is any indication, the race in the GT Le Mans (GTLM) class Sunday may come down to a good, old-fashioned battle between Corvette and Ford.
Throughout the 15-minute session, the top spot on the leaderboard switched hands a remarkable eight times with the car in every occasion coming from the Corvette Racing or Ford Chip Ganassi Racing camps.
When all was said it done, however, it was the No. 3 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R of Antonio Garcia who topped the No. 67 Ford GT of Richard Westbrook by 0.317 seconds for Corvette Racing’s first pole of the season. Garcia and Westbrook swapped the lead five times between the two of them in the final eight minutes, as lap times continued to fall throughout the session before Garcia landed the knockout punch with a lap of one minute, 40.799 seconds (121.429 mph).
“You always need to be careful around Richard because he is always really fast,” said Garcia. “The guys did a really good job telling me what he was doing and everything. That gave me the opportunity the first time to cool down and then I could go again because I had more, as I showed on the last lap.
“I’m really happy for Chevrolet. Finally, we got something that is good, so hopefully it’s something for turning around tomorrow and starting to win races again.”
A win tomorrow for Garcia and his co-driver Jan Magnussen would be an historic one for Corvette Racing. The team has long been in search of its 100th IMSA victory, scoring win No. 99 in April 2018 at Long Beach.
Garcia and Magnussen’s winless streak dates back even further to VIRginia International Raceway in August 2017, but remarkable consistency for the No. 3 team has led the duo to back-to-back GTLM class championships. So far in 2019, Garcia and Magnussen sit second in points with three consecutive podium finishes and back-to-back runner-up finishes.
Another Corvette C7.R, the No. 4 of Tommy Milner rounded out the top three with a lap of 1:41.291 (120.839 mph), just short of Westbrook’s lap of 1:41.116 (121.049 mph). The No. 24 BMW Team RLL BMW M8 GTE of John Edwards broke up the Chevrolet/Ford party by qualifying fourth, one spot ahead of Joey Hand’s No. 66 Ford GT in fifth.
ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R - GTLM POLE-WINNER: "You always have to be careful with Richard (Westbrook, second-quickest qualifier) because he is always very, very fast. Kyle (Millay, No. 3 Corvette race engineer) did a really good job of telling me what Richard was doing and that gave me an opportunity to cool down so I could go again. So I had more to give as I showed on the last lap. I am happy for Corvette and Chevrolet. And finally we have something which is good for tomorrow and we can turn it around and start winning races.”
(On engine change after Friday first practice): "It was very tough to lose an engine in first practice, but that is why we have the other Corvette. The No. 4 car did a fantastic job of doing all the work that is supposed to be divided between both cars. All the work they've done we put in our car and everything seems to be working as you saw. It is always a team effort and I'm very happy with how the car behaved today and I hope this is a good start for tomorrow."
Acura Sweeps GTD Front Row as Hindman Earns Second Motul Pole Award of Season
Leading the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GT Daytona (GTD) point standings with co-driver Mario Farnbacher, Trent Hindman found another top position to take – the pole for Sunday’s Six Hour of The Glen at Watkins Glen International.
In Saturday’s qualifying session, Hindman drove the No. 86 Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3 to the top of the leaderboard, earning the Motul Pole Award with a time of 1:44.978 (116.595 MPH). It’s his second Motul Pole Award of the year.
“To come here and pay these guys back for their efforts, feels really good,” said Hindman, who with Farnbacher will be joined by endurance racer Justin Marks. “But they deserve all the credit on this one. It was a tough couple weeks to get things turned around for this event. There’s still plenty that needs to be done tomorrow.
“It’s a long race, but qualifying up front is certainly very important for us. The Acura really loves clean air. Whether it’s wet or dry, it doesn’t really matter. But being out front, unobstructed is great for us. We’re going to try and take full advantage of that. It’s a really good result in qualifying.”
One thing Hindman hasn’t done yet is win, despite having a top-10 finish in each of his nine WeatherTech Championship GTD starts. He has four runner-up finishes, including the class’ most recent WeatherTech Championship race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
“That’s like the biggest thing right now,” said Hindman. “We’ve been so close and even in Daytona and Sebring we’ve been quick, but had some horrible luck fall in our way. So unfortunately, we couldn’t capitalize on the speed that we had. Every race we come out, we’re always shooting for a win.
“There’s no event where we’re ever trying to take a back-seat approach. It’s just a matter of how everything really shakes out tomorrow. But pole position is where we want to be starting, it’s a step in the right direction.”
Making it an all-Acura, all-Meyer Shank Racing front row was Christina Nielsen in the No. 57 Heinricher Racing with Meyer Shank Racing Acura. Nielsen jumped to second in the final three minutes of the 15-minute qualifying session with a time of 1:45.295 (116.244 MPH). Nielsen will co-drive with Katherine Legge and Bia Figueiredo.
Also jumping up the charts late in the session was Dillon Machavern in the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3. Machavern was part of the Turner team’s winning lineup last year at The Glen and will be join this weekend by Bill Auberlen and Robby Foley.
Feedback can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Go to our forums to discuss this article