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Derani Puts Whelen Cadillac on Pole for 2024 Rolex 24 at Daytona

Pipo Derani put the #31 Whelen Cadillac Racing Cadillac V-Series.R on pole for the 2024 running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona when he lapped the Daytona International Speedway in 1:32.656, just .071 seconds quicker than the Cadillac Racing #01 Cadillac with Sebastian Bourdais at the wheel.

Third quickest, and the first of the Porsches, was Filipe Nasr in the #7 car, Nasr putting in a 1:32.876.

The first of the BMW M Hybrid V8s was the #25 entry piloted by Connor De Phillippi who put in a 1:33.022.

As the session got underway, only nine of the ten GTP entries took to the circuit. The #5 Proton Competition Porsche 963 remained in the garage following Neel Jani’s off-track moment during the final practice session for the senior class.

Jesse Krohn took first blood with a 1:43.557 on his second lap in the #24 BMW M Hybrid V8 but was quickly overtaken by Felipe Nasr in the #7 Porsche 963 with a 1:36.947.

A new qualifying record was set by Connor De Phillippi in the #25 BMW with a 1:33.022, beating Ollie Jarvis’s 1:33.685. However the session still had more surprises when Derani in the #31 Cadillac set a 1:32.656 on his fifth lap with just over four minutes remaining. Bourdais went second quickest followed by the #7 Porsche Penske Motorsport Porsche 963 of Felipe Nasr.

In the GTD classes, the two top slots went to the Pro class with Sebastian Priaulx taking class pole position with a 1:44.382 in the in the #77 AO Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R followed by Jack Hawksworth in the #14 VasserSullivan Lexus RC F GT3.

Third quickest in the GTD class was the #12 Vasser Sullivan Lexus of Parker Thompson who lapped in 1:44.494.

The 15-minute GTD and GTD Pro session got underway after the final practice session for the GTP category and almost immediately the red flag was shown after the #92 Kellymoss with Riley Porsche 911 GT3 R in the hands of David Brule made contact with the barrier. The clock continued to count down and at one stage it looked like the session would conclude with no times set. Time, however, was added to the session and the clock was re-set with over eight minutes remaining.

Klaus Bachler in the #86 MDK Motorsports Porsche set a 1:45.941 to go to the top of the timing screens followed by Matt Bell in the #13 AWA Corvette C8.R GTD.

Louis Spinelli put in a 1:44.709 in the #78 Forte Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3 before Seb Priaulx lapped in 1:44.382 to put a GTD Pro entry at the top of the timing screens for the first time. Jack Hawksworth went second quickest in the #14 Lexus with a 1:44.462 on his fourth lap.

Pole position in the LPM2 session was set by Ben Keating in the #2 United Autosports ORECA, Keating lapping in 1:38.501, just over a tenth of a second quicker than Nick Boule in the #52 Inter Europol by PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports entry. The top three in class was completed by the #04 Crowdstrike Racing by APR entry piloted by George Kurtz, the Crowdstrike president and CEO lapping in 1:39.252.

The #88 Richard Mille AF Corse car with Luis Perez Companc driving had an off-track  moment at the West Hairpin which broke the left rear corner. Perez Companc limped back to the pits with smoke trailing behind his red ORECA.

With qualifying completed, the Daytona International Speedway now prepares for race week with the lights going out for the 2024 running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona at 1.40pm ET on Saturday January the 27th.