IMSA starting lineup: Whelen Engineering Racing will start from the pole position for the IMSA Sportscar Weekend at Road America after Felipe Nasr qualified the No. 31 Cadillac with a 2-minute, 07.919-second lap.
Nasr is teamed with Pipo Derani as they sit third in the standings, 114 points out of the lead held by the Konica Minolta Team, and 33 points behind Mazda Motorsports in second.
Nasr’s pole position was earned despite the fact that he was one of several drivers to spin during the session, which was run in wet conditions.
“It was my first time driving in the rain here because we didn’t take part in the test yesterday in FP1 due to the conditions,” Nasr said. “So for me it was like I’ll try to understand the grip level. And as you go out there as a driver, you never know what to expect. You’re just driving to the grip, and with the forecast, everybody was saying you didn’t know what was going to happen. There was a lot of pressure to put out a lap quite early. So I kept chipping away each lap.”
He will be joined at the front of the pack by second-place Ricky Taylor (2:08.677) in the Konica Minolta Acura.
Mazda Motorsports’ Oliver Jarvis (2:08.716) and Chip Ganassi’s Kevin Magnussen (2:09.194) will make up row two.
Tristan Vautier (2:10.497) and Oliver Pla (2:10.500) will round out the DPi field on row three.
IMSA SPORTSCAR WEEKEND AT ROAD AMERICA: Details for Sunday’s race
With a 2-minute, 18.511-second lap and qualifying seventh overall, Ben Keating was the top LMP2 driver.
“It was wacky; wack is a very good adjective,” said Keating. “It looked like there might be a dry line and I thought it was going to be a hard decisions to make. We decided to go out on wets and once I got out there, there was no question. When you got to Turn 5 on that opening lap, there was a lot more rain on the back half than there was on the front straight. I anticipated we were going to have a red flag and we would not be able finish qualifying. So I wanted to get a really good lap in early. I did one that was pretty safe, just so I knew I would get one in. I had the 11 car right behind me, right on my tail.”
Steven Thomas (2:19.941) in the No. 11 qualified second in the division.
Sunday’s race will begin at 2:40 p.m. ET and will be televised on the NBC Sports App, NBCSports.com and TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold. There will be a replay at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN.
Rain? No problem.
— #IMSA / #RoadAmerica (@IMSA) August 7, 2021
Here were the top qualifiers in other classes:
–GTLM: Antonio Garcia, Jordan Taylor No. 3 Corvette Racing C8.R
–GTD: Zacharie Robichon, Laurens Vanthoor, No. 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R
–LMP3: Dan Goldburg, Rasmus Lindh, No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports Ligier