Lester stars in thrilling AGT qualifying battle
Jono Lester guided the Trass Family Motorsport Ferrari 458 to a fourth pole position of the season in a hard fought Australian GT qualifying session at Sandown.
The Kiwi was involved in a thrilling battle for pole with the Maranello Motorsport Ferrari 458 of Tony D’Alberto and Grant Denyer in both 20 minute sessions.
However, its was Lester’s 1:08.9004s effort in the second hit out that secured pole by a margin of 0.04s from D’Alberto.
Lester will join forces with Graeme Smyth for the weekend’s two 60 minute contests.
Championship leader Nathan Antunes maintained his strong form to secure third on the grid although the Beechwood Audi R8 driver was 0.7s adrift of the leading Ferraris.
Antunes will share the second row alongside the Glen Wood/Elliot Barbour M Motorsport Lamborghini Gallardo.
Factory Audi driver Christopher Mies struggled to match the speed of the pace-setters which left him to settle for fifth spot in the Jamec-Pem Audi R8, he shares with Ryan Millier.
The Nurburgring 24 Hour winner was a second adrift of the Lester Ferrari and only fractionally ahead of the Erebus Motorsport Mercedes AMG SLS GT3 of Morgan Haber.
Klark Quinn was seventh fastest in the Darrell Lea McLaren 650S just 0.04s ahead of the second Erebus Motorsport Mercedes SLS of Max Twigg/Geoff Emery and the Reiter Chevrolet Camaro of Justin McMillan/John McIntyre.
The AMAC Motorsport Porsche of Andrew Macpherson and Brad Shiels rounded out the top 10.
Making their Australian GT debut, Ross Stone Racing qualified in 12th spot courtesy of Andrew Miedecke’s effort in the recently purchased Aston Martin Vantage.
The first of the weekend’s Australian GT Championship races will begin at 1655 on Saturday afternoon.
Result: Australian GT Championship Qualifying 1/2 Combined Times Sandown
|1||Trass Family Motorsport||Jono Lester (NZ)||Ferrari 458 GT3||Q2||1:08.9004|
|2||Maranello Motorsport||Tony D’Alberto (Vic)||Ferrari 458 GT3 2014||Q2||1:08.9491||00.0487|
|3||Skwirk / Beechwood Homes||Nathan Antunes (NSW)||Audi R8 Ultra||Q2||1:09.6707||00.7703|
|4||Interlloy M Motorsport||Elliot Barbour (Vic)||Lamborghini Gallardo||Q1||1:09.8955||00.9951|
|5||JAMEC PEM Racing||Christopher Mies (GDR)||Audi R8 Ultra||Q2||1:09.9992||01.0988|
|6||Erebus Motorsport||Morgan Haber||Mercedes Benz AMG SLS||Q1||1:10.0289||01.1285|
|7||Darrell Lea||Klark Quinn (Qld)||McLaren 650S GT3||Q1||1:10.2571||01.3567|
|8||Erebus Motorsport||Max Twigg||Mercedes Benz AMG SLS||Q1||1:10.2915||01.3911|
|9||Interlloy M Motorsport||Justin McMillan (Vic)||Reiter Camaro GT3||Q1||1:10.3788||01.4784|
|10||AMAC Motorsport||Andrew Macpherson (NSW)||Porsche 997 GT3-R||Q2||1:10.4985||01.5981|
|11||Supabarn Supermarkets||James Koundouris (ACT)||Porsche 997 GT3-R||Q1||1:10.8495||01.9491|
|12||Miedecke Motor Group||Andrew Miedecke (NSW)||Aston Martin Vantage||Q2||1:11.0640||02.1636|
|13||Voight Contracting||Steve Voight (Qld)||Porsche 997 GT3-R||Q1||1:11.1473||02.2469|
|14||DeFelice Homes||Tony DeFelice (Vic)||Ferrari 458 GT3||Q2||1:11.2182||02.3178|
|15||Darrell Lea||Anthony Quinn (Qld)||McLaren 650S GT3||Q1||1:11.2626||02.3622|
|16||Adina Apartment Hotels||Greg Taylor (NSW)||Audi R8 LMS||Q2||1:11.4953||02.5949|
|17||HHH Racing/Triffid/ESP||Michael Hovey (Qld)||Ginetta G55 GT3||Q2||1:11.7374||02.8370|
|18||Objective Racing||Tony Walls (Qld)||McLaren 650S GT3||Q1||1:11.8630||02.9626|
|19||JAMEC PEM Racing||Steven McLaughlan (Vic)||Audi R8 Ultra||Q2||1:11.9642||03.0638|
|20||Supabarn Supermarkets||Theo Koundouris (ACT)||Porsche 996 GT3-S||Q1||1:12.0006||03.1002|
|21||Fastway Couriers||Simon Ellinghham (NZ)||Porsche GT3 Cup Car||Q2||1:12.1048||03.2044|
|22||JJA Consulting Group||Jan Jinadasa (Vic)||Lamborghini LP560-4||Q2||1:12.3691||03.4687|
|23||Flying B Racing||Peter Edwards (Vic)||Bentley Continental||Q2||1:12.6395||03.7391|
|24||Hogs Breath Cafe||Mark Griffith (Qld)||Audi R8 LMS||Q2||1:12.7241||03.8237|
|25||Southern Star Developments||Rob Smith (Vic)||Audi R8 LMS||Q2||1:14.4011||05.5007|
|26||Rentcorp Forklifts||Indiran Padayachee||Porsche GT3 Cup Car||Q2||1:14.4015||05.5011|
|27||DPM Motorsport||Dale Paterson (Vic)||Reiter Camaro GT3||Q1||1:14.8894||05.9890|
|28||SAFE-T-STOP||Richard Gartner (NSW)||Porsche GT3 Cup Car||Q2||1:15.0132||06.1128|
|29||Thomson Geer Lawyers||Michael O’Donnell (SA)||Porsche GT3 Cup Car||Q2||1:16.6070||07.7066|
|30||Donut King||Tony Alford (Qld)||Nissan GTR||Q2||1:18.1037||09.2033|