Keating Claims Third Consecutive LMP2 Pole
September 11, 2021
By Jeff Olson
IMSA Wire Service
MONTEREY, Calif. — Filipe Albuquerque’s “crazy” lap turned into a milestone.
Albuquerque won the Motul Pole Award for the Hyundai Monterey Sports Car Championship at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. It was the first pole position of his IMSA career.
Albuquerque, who will co-drive the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Acura ARX-05 with Ricky Taylor in Sunday’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race, was clocked at 1 minute, 14.441 seconds around the 11-turn, 2.238-mile course. The lap — his sixth of seven during the 15-minute qualifying session — had its moments.
“That lap was just coming like crazy,” Albuquerque said. “… I was four-tenths faster into the last corner and then somehow I lost it under braking. I think I lost like half a tenth in the last corner. I missed the apex. It was still fine. I’m happy about it.”
Albuquerque’s pole lap led a sweep of the front row for Acura. Dane Cameron had the second-best lap in the Daytona Prototype international (DPi) class in the No. 60 Meyer Shank Racing with Curb-Agajanian Acura ARX-05 he co-drives with Olivier Pla.
Albuquerque and Taylor share a 41-point lead atop the DPi stands over Pipo Derani and Felipe Nasr, who co-drive the No. 31 Action Express Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R that will start fifth Sunday.
“With how close the championship is, track position is important,” Albuquerque said. “The level of everyone in terms of strategy is so accurate and so well-timed that it’s really hard to overtake. Knowing that this track is favorable to the Acura, it is super, super important to qualify on the pole.”
Kevin Magnussen will start third in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R he co-drives with Renger van der Zande.
Harry Tincknell originally qualified the No. 55 Mazda fourth on the DPi grid, but post-race technical inspection revealed that the car’s camber exceeded the maximum permitted. As a result, it will move to the rear of the DPi field.
Keating Collects Seventh Career Motul Pole Award
Ben Keating won the pole in the Le Mans Prototype 2 (LMP2) class with a lap of 1:17.227 in the No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA LMP2 07 he shares with Mikkel Jensen.
“What I’ve always heard about Laguna is if you think your car is set up well and handling well here, then you’re not going fast enough,” said Keating, who will start seventh overall. “Your car is always a handful around this track. It’s one of the characteristics of it.”
The No. 18 Era Motorsport ORECA LMP2 07 shared by Dwight Merriman and Ryan Dalziel will start second in LMP2. Steven Thomas will start third in the No. 11 WIN Autosport ORECA he shares with co-driver Tristan Nunez.
NBCSN’s live coverage of Sunday’s 2-hour, 40-minute race begins at 4 p.m. ET. Live streaming on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold, NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports App. Coverage outside the U.S. is available at IMSA.com/TVLive.