Daniel Mancinelli, driving the #31 TR3 Racing Ferrari F488 GT3, will start from pole for Race 1 of the weekend for the 2017 Pirelli World Challenge GT/GTA category at Sonoma Raceway, California.
The 29-year old driver from San Severino Marche, Italy lapped the 2.385 mile (3.838 kms) Sonoma Raceway circuit in 1:32.002, .146 seconds quicker than Michael Cooper in the #8 Cadillac Racing Cadillac ATS-V.R.
Starting third on the grid for the 60-minute race will be Ryan Dalziel in the #2 CRP Racing Mercedes AMG-GT3 who put in a 1:32.216.
Prior to Sonoma, TR3 Racing had struggled to repair damage sustained to the #31 Ferrari F488 GT3 at the previous round as access to their workshop in Miami had been restricted due to Hurricane Irma.
As a result, Mancinelli, already with three Pirelli World Challenge SprintX victories in 2017, was delighted with his fourth pole position of the season.
“Unfortunately we did not have any testing at Sonoma Raceway and I had to learn the track quickly on Friday morning,” said Mancinelli.
“The first session I just tried to see the track and the direction it goes. Then, Friday afternoon I put all the pieces together to find a way for a fast lap. After the team fixed the repairs from COTA’s damage, I knew we had a good car and this morning’s qualifying was very good. It has been a crazy time for us the past two weeks.”
Qualifying in the GTA class was dominated by Michael Schein in the #16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R who lapped in 1:32.893, over 0.6 seconds quicker than James Sofronas in the #14 GMG Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R. The 2017 SprintX GT PA drivers champion, and current leader in the Sprint GT GTA drivers standings, put in a 1:33.551 to line up alongside Schein on the front row of the class grid.
Third quickest in the GTA category was Pablo Perez Companc in the #69 Champ 1 Mercedes AMG GT3 who lapped in 1:33.657.
There being only a single entry in the GT Cup category, Yuki Harata set a 1:37.311 in the #55 Dream Racing Motorsport Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo to start from the back of the grid.
Race 1 of the weekend, Round Eight of the 2017 Pirelli World Challenge Sprint GT championship for the GT/GTS classes, starts at 14:00 local time. Live streaming can be found HERE.
Photo courtesy of PWC