Dyson Racing stole the front row for their home race, their two Lola/Mazda P1 cars leading the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) field at Lime Rock Park.
Chris Dyson claimed only his second career overall ALMS pole position with a lap of just 45.708 seconds around the short Connecticut venue, taking pole by 0.173 seconds. “I'm so happy. It's great to be here at our home race,” said Dyson on the series' official website. “We have a lot of friends and family here who are cheering us on. So you don't want to send them home disappointed.” Dyson shares the no.16 car with Guy Smith
The Lime Rock weekend is also the debut for a second Dyson entry in 2011, allowing the team to sweep the front row for the first time since 2006. Humaid Al Masaood shares the car with former BTCC driver Steven Kane, who took responsibility for qualifying the car on his ALMS debut.
“I was impressed with both Steven and Humaid, and Steven really showed a lot in qualifying,” Dyson surmised. “It's a credit to the guys on our side to give them such a good car. Everyone at Lola has been going flat-out to get us what we need, and AER has been doing a great job with the Mazda engine. We're very excited for tomorrow. It wasn't a one-lap wonder.”
Muscle Milk AMR rounded out the small field in the premier class ahead of Elton Julian who took LMP Challenge pole for Genoa Racing by 0.393 seconds from Gunnar Jeannette, with who Julian drove to the class victory at Lime Rock last season.
In the always competitive GT class Joey Hand kept up his and BMW Team RLL's fine 2011 form with pole position and tenth over all in the car he shares with Dirk Muller. The joy was BMW was doubled as they, like Dyson Racing in the overall standings, locked out the front row, Dirk Werner just a fraction of a second down on his teammate as both M3 GTs beat Flying Lizard Motorsport's Patrick Long – winner with Jorg Bergmeister at Lime Rock in 2009 and 2010 – into third place.
“Racing is a lot about momentum,” Hand said. “You always have pressure when you are driving for such a great team like BMW Team RLL. It has been a great start for me. To start with two races, two wins and now two poles, this is great.”
“I only did about six laps in the first session. I was pretty confident with the setup in the dry. The Dunlop tires have been very good. From a driver's standpoint, that's what you're looking for – balance and good tires. You give me that combination and I'll go pretty fast.”
The pair of Corvette Racing entries will line up fourth and fifth in class.
Sometime WTCC and Porsche Supercup driver Jaap van Lagen scored GT Challenge pole for Green Hornet Racing on his ALMS debut.