James Davison scores class pole for Daytona 24

James Davison celebrates GTD pole with team owner Kevin Buckler

James Davison celebrates GTD pole with team owner Kevin Buckler

Australian James Davison has taken his The Racer’s Group Aston Martin to the GTD pole position for this weekend’s Rolex 24 at Daytona.

The 28-year-old, who drives full-time in the United Sportscar Championship, drafted behind one of his Audi GTD rivals, boosting his speed around the oval on his single lap after a red flag interruption.

Davison proved 0.15s quicker than nearest GTD rival, the Jeroen Bleekemolen-driven Riley Motorsports Dodge Viper.

Good enough for 33rd outright in the 55 car field, Davison’s effort marks his fifth straight GTD pole in the United Sportscar Championship.

“I’m blown away that we pulled this off,” James Davison told Sportscar365.

“We were genuinely 1.3s off in practice. Maybe there was a few tenths left with a few other things working our way.

“I thought if we were going to be within seven tenths in qualifying, that will be a good day for us.

“We sat in the pits and kind of waited to see what everyone else would do then it went red so it meant I only had one lap.

“I set up a gap on the Audi, not sure whether he was going to be quicker than me or slower than me.

Negri Jr drove the Mike Shank Ligier-Honda to pole

Negri Jr drove the Mike Shank Ligier-Honda to pole

“I just got a massive tow off him around the entire oval which ultimately put us on pole today. I think it was worth half a second, maybe more.”

Shane van Gisbergen’s Alex Job Racing Porsche GTD will start 43rd outright after it was qualified by Leh Keen.

Oswaldo Negri Jr meanwhile took Mike Shank Racing’s Ligier-Honda to the outright pole, edging Scott Dixon in the lead Chip Ganassi Racing Riley-Ford by 0.1s.

Scott Pruett put the second Ganassi entry on row two, which it will share with Joao Barbosa’s Action Express Corvette-Chevrolet.

The DeltaWing proved quick enough for fifth outright in the hands of Andy Meyrick, just 0.43s from the pole.

Oliver Gavin drove the lead Corvette to the top spot in GTLM, over 0.3s clear of Gianmaria Bruni’s AF Corse Ferrari.

Ryan Briscoe’s sister Corvette will start fifth in GTLM, with Kiwi Earl Bamber’s factory Porsche in 10th.

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