Kay van Berlo made it a clean sweep of sessions on Wednesday at Sebring International Raceway as he topped both practice sessions and continued his form to take pole position with a lap of 2:03.330 in the Kelly-Moss Road and Race Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car.
It was another Kelly-Moss car that would lead the way in the Pro-Am class as Efrin Castro also topped all three sessions of the day, claiming pole position in class with a time of 2:05.299, which was good enough for fourteenth overall, ahead of JDX Racing’s Peter Atwater and Kelly-Moss teammate Alan Metni. The top nine drivers would end the session within one second of each other in the Pro class.
The 2021 runner-up opened the session with the fastest lap, putting in a time pf 2:05.349 before teammate Riley Dickinson outpaced him, improving to 2:04.697. 311RS Motorsport’s Leh Keen briefly put himself in contention for the top spot with a time of 2:04.467 before van Berlo set his fastest lap to take pole position on his third flying lap.
“It’s been a pretty smooth day with first place in all of the sessions so far, obviously very happy with pole,” van Berlo told The Checkered Flag. “It’s a big priority, especially with 43 cars on the track, if you start mid-field or even a couple of cars back you are in a really risky position, especially the opening laps of the race, and especially the beginning of the season, you just don’t want to be in that position.
“We knew that we had a good car, free practice was good, we were in the right direction, within the window already, we just had to put it together, which is not that easy, especially with so many cars out on track, its easy to catch traffic at the wrong moment.
“The team and me were able to pull it off today, two decent laps, especially the first one, the second one I’m not completely satisfied with because I made a mistake, still, I had a big doubt on that one, so even though I made a mistake I was still fast enough to take the pole for the second race as well.
Looking ahead to the races, van Berlo knows what he has to do, after winning seven races last season and missing out on the title due to a handful on non-finishes, the Dutch driver is aiming for consistency.
“Race tomorrow is more important, lots of points up for grabs; I just want to be consistent, of course I am going for the win, but it’s all about getting points, being consistent, staying out of trouble and that should give us the best result by the end of the season.
“Tomorrow is going to be a dry day, I’m feeling good, happy so far, the team is happy, so lets keep the momentum going and see if we can pull it off in both races.”
MDK Motorsports team-owner/driver Mark Kvamme made it three-in-a-row for the class leaders as he dominated the day in the Am class, setting an impressive time of 2:05.980, putting him twenty-first on the grid and in pole position for the class.
For the second race of the weekend the second fastest time of the session from each driver is taken to decide the grid, unsurprisingly van Berlo, Castro and Kvamme will lead the way in their respective classes for that race.
Porsche Carrera Cup North America – Sebring International Raceway – Qualifying – Race 1
|1||3||Pro||Kay van Berlo||2.03.330||–|
|26||22||Pro-Am||Carlos De Quesada||2.06.540||3.210|
Porsche Carrera Cup North America – Sebring International Raceway – Qualifying – Race 2
|1||3||Kay van Berlo||2:03.356||–|
|23||22||Carlos De Quesada||2:06.746||3.390|