Gianmaria Bruni made sure the Risi Competizione name returned to the 12 Hours of Sebring with pole position in GT class at the beginning of a full season in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) for the team.
Bruni set a best lap of 1:58.815 to secure pole position by just over a tenth from Oliver Gavin in the better of the two Corvette Racing entries.
“For sure it was a very nice qualifying session with a clear track and no traffic,” said Bruni, for whom it was a third consecutive 12 Hours of Sebring pole after topping qualifying with Risi in 2011 and with AF Corse last season. “ I’m very happy for Giuseppe Risi and the team. His passion has got the team back to the ALMS and everyone’s worked very hard to get to where we are today.”
“It’s great to be back in the ALMS, on a nice circuit like this at Sebring, and to start the first qualifying session of the year with pole. I have liked the circuit ever since my first race here with Risi in 2008; I like the bumps and when it’s not easy for everyone – it’s a bigger challenge.”
Bruno will share the #62 with fellow Italians Olivier Beretta and Matteo Malucelli who will drive the full ALMS season for the team.
“This is a very good start for us for the weekend,” said team owner Giuseppe Risi. “It shows that our team is together and, more than anything else, I’m pleased for them as they’ve worked well together and put in a lot of hours leading up until today. Hopefully we’re giving our drivers the car they need to succeed tomorrow as that’s the result that matters the most.”
The top eight cars – out of a total of twelve in the class – were covered by less than a second with teams representing Corvette, Aston Martin, SRT, Porsche and BMW all inside the narrow envelope of lap time around the 3.74 mile track.
The 12 Hours of Sebring begins and 10:45am local time tomorrow (Saturday).