Pipo Derani won the pole position for Saturday’s Motul Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta, the season finale for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, and his last race with the Tequila Patron ESM team.
It was the second Motul Pole Award of 2018 for the team after also leading the field to green in Detroit back in June.
“Big thank you to my entire team,’’ Derani said after turning his fastest lap of one minute, 10.437 seconds (129.817 mph). “This place is such a difficult place to pass that it’s really important. Any race to start in front, it makes your life easier. I’ve said this before at Detroit, and here is the same. When you have the chance to start up front, it makes the entire team’s life easier. For my teammates, and for myself.
“Last year we started on the first row, P2. We managed to lead at the end of the first lap which was an amazing feeling. But today, one place better. Hopefully we can capitalize on everything like we did today in qualifying and have a clean race. It’s not going to be easy, as we know. Petit is an amazing, tough race but very rewarding one if you go through it clean and have a nice race. Hopefully that’s our case tomorrow.”
Oliver Jarvis in the No. 77 Mazda Team Joest Mazda DPi was close on the heels of Derani as they navigated the 12-turn Road Atlanta circuit in a time of 1:10.561 (129.589 mph) and he will start next to the No. 22.
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