Oliver Jarvis pulled out a track record-obliterating lap in the No. 77 Mazda Team Joest RT-24P to capture the pole position for Saturday’s Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen.
Jarvis tamed the historic 3.4-mile circuit in 1m29.639s to edge out the top Team Penske Acuras in the 15-minute session.
“I love this place,” Jarvis said. “This place is just amazing. You can just push — there’s so much grip — and that was fun.
“To be honest, I’ve struggled a bit over the weekend. I didn’t have the balance I wanted, but the team’s worked phenomenally hard. That’s important for us. It’s a close fight. The [Acura] Penskes are quick again, and Dane [Cameron] is giving me pressure.”
It was the third pole position of the team this season, which opened with Jarvis setting an all-time mark in qualifying for the Rolex 24 At Daytona.
“Now, it’s time to put it all together tomorrow,” said Mazda North America Competition Director John Doonan. “These poles are great, track records are great, but we came here to do one thing — to put it on the top step. It’s a long race tomorrow, but it’s good to start up front.”
Team Penske Acuras took the next two positions. Cameron was second in the No. 6 Acura ARX-05, running 1m29.862s as he and co-driver Juan Pablo Montoya are bidding for their third consecutive IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship triumph. A close third was Ricky Taylor, 1m29.928s in the No. 7.
Harry Tincknell took fourth in the No. 55 Mazda, with Renger van der Zande fastest of the six Cadillacs, running 1m30.758 in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R.
Gabriel Aubry led LMP2, running 1m31.735s, eighth-fastest overall in the No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA Gibson.
The top nine qualifiers eclipsed Colin Braun’s year-old mark of 1m32.356, set in the No. 54 CORE autosport Nissan Ligier JS P217. By comparison, the circuit’s Formula 1 track record of 1m33.29s was set by Bruno Giacomelli in 1980 in an Alfa Romeo. The 3.377-mile circuit used in F1 included the “Scheckter Chicane” in the Esses, but was without the Inner Loop that was installed near the end of the back straight in 1992.
Garcia fastest for Corvette in GT Le Mans
Antonio Garcia captured his first pole of the season for Corvette Racing with a lap of 1m40.799s in the No. 3 Corvette C7.R.
“I’m really happy for Chevrolet,” Garcia said. “Finally, we’ve got something that is good, so hopefully it’s something for turning around tomorrow and starting to win races again.”
Garcia credited the team, which changed engines on Friday after missing the opening practice session.
“It was very tough to lose all of first practice, but that’s why we have the other car,” Garcia said. “The No. 4 car did a fantastic job, so we took what they did and just put it on our car. Everything seems to be working, as you saw. It’s always a team effort. I am very happy with the way the car behaved today, so I’m excited for the start tomorrow.”
The Corvette Racing entries sandwiched the Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GTs. Richard Westbrook was second in the No. 67, 1m41.116, followed by Tom Milner in the No. 4 Corvette, 1m41.291s.
Joey Hand was originally third, but lost his best lap in the No. 66 Ford GT due to a track limits violation. That demoted Hand to fifth, while promoting the BMW Team RLL No. 24 BMW M8 GTLM of John Edwards to the outside of the front row. Hand’s was one of several penalties for violating the limits in Turns 1 and 8 that were assessed during the session.
Meyer Shank sweeps front row in GT Daytona
Trent Hindman sprinted to the GTD pole, running 1m44.978s in the No. 86 Meyer Shank Racing with Curb-Agajanian Acura NSX GT3, edging out teammate Christina Nielsen in the No. 57 Caterpillar Acura by 0.317s.
“I was giving it everything that this Acura NSX GT3 had,” said Hindman, who won the pole at Sebring earlier this season. “We had a lot of unknowns after practice this morning, between the weather and a few gambles we made with the setup last night, but the Meyer Shank guys pulled through as always. It’s an excellent 1-2 for the team.
“As competitive as the GTD category is, qualifying is absolutely 100-percent important. It will be really nice to have the Acura out in clean air tomorrow. Whatever comes along [with the weather], bring it on — we’re ready!”
Dillon Machavern was third in the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M8 GT3, while Jeff Westphal will start fourth in the No. 63 Scuderia Corsa WeatherTech Ferrari 488 GT3.
AIM Vasser Sullivan opted to park the No. 12 Lexus RC F GT3.R of Frank Montecalvo, Townsend Bell and Aaron Telitz for qualifying in order to do a “proactive” engine change after being unhappy with the data from the morning practice.
UP NEXT (all times ET): Sunday morning’s activity opens with a 20-minute warm-up at 8 a.m. The Sahlen’s Six Hours takes the green flag at 9:45 a.m. It airs live on the NBC Sports app, and NBCSN tomorrow evening starting at 7 p.m.