Audi R8 LMS hog top three spots on grid for Hankook 24h Dubai

Audi R8 LMS hog top three spots on grid for Hankook 24h Dubai

14.01.2016: Al Qubaisi’s Abu Dhabi Racing Mercedes best of the rest in fourth; UAE team Memac Ogilvy Duel Racing fastest in TCR Class

Al Qubaisi’s Abu Dhabi Racing Mercedes best of the rest in fourth;

UAE team Memac Ogilvy Duel Racing fastest in TCR Class



photo caption:    Audi R8 LMS driver Christer Jons after claiming pole position



The C.Abt Audi R8 LMS of Christer Jons, Andreas Weishaupt, Isaac Tutumlu-Lopez, Mattias Henkola and Daniel Abt will start the 11th edition of the Hankook 24H Dubai from pole position.


The race is being held under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of UAE National Olympic Committee.


The C.Abt Racing outfit set a best time of 1 minute 57.892 seconds to claim the top starting spot for the race, which was 0.318 of a second up on the next best which was the Land Motorsport Audi R8 LMS.


Jons, the driver who set the pole winning time, said: “I knew that we could be quick, but I hadn’t expected to be able to post a lap time of 1:57. Perhaps, the fact that conditions improved as the sun came down helped us as well.”


The Belgian Audi Club Team WRT R8 LMS was third fastest, making it a top three shut out for Audi and with four cars in the top six, they clearly signalled their intent ahead of the race.


The all new Mercedes AMG GT3 by Black Falcon, in Abu Dhabi Racing colours and led by Emirati ace Khaled Al Qubaisi, ended the session fourth fastest and the best of the ‘home’ teams – the fastest non-Audi on the grid.


Al Qubaisi summed up: “We had a good qualifying though we are aware that the leading car is faster. Yesterday we had a problem with weight and a smaller restrictor, but today we changed to a bigger restrictor.


“We feel we are about a second off the pace though we will see how it goes tomorrow but we are comfortable and confident of achieving our goal,” added the two time winner of the Dubai 24H who is aiming for a hat-trick with Jeroen Bleekemolen, Maro Engel, Hubert Haupt and Indy Dontje on duty.


It was a big day for the Memac Ogilvy Duel Racing team who were fastest in the all new TCR Class with Phil Quaife and the Moutran brothers - Nabil, Sami and Ramzi - sharing the driving duties.


Sami Moutran said, “That was a good session for us and getting pole on home soil is special. It is a long race ahead of us, but the goal is to repeat what we did here last year and win our class.”


In the A6 Amateur Class, Dubai Autodrome based Dragon Racing were third and seventh fastest, with the #888 car of Matt Griffin, Alex Kapadia, John Hartshorne, Khaled Al Mudhaf Al Mudhaf and Rob Barff fastest of the pair.


Al Mudhaf said, “More important than where we start on the grid is to be there at the end of the race after 24 hours. But it is good to see that we have podium winning pace and that of course is our target. The top step preferably.”


The GDL Racing Porsche 991 Cup team, featuring eight times UAE champion Karim Al Azhari, was second fastest in the SP2 Class.


The Lechner Racing ME Porsche with Emirati drivers Sheikh Hasher Al Maktoun and Saeed Al Mehairi in their line-up was 15th in the Porsche 991 Cup Class.


Emirati driver Ahmed Al Melaihi's Sorg Racing BMW M235i was second best in the Cup1 Class.




The 2016 Hankook 24 Hours of Dubai will be flagged off at 14:00pm on Friday.


Entry with access to grandstands and the paddock area is free for spectators, with family friendly activities scheduled throughout the weekend.



Hankook 24H Dubai Race Weekend Schedule:


Friday 15 January 2016


10:30 – 11:00 Hankook 24H Dubai Warming up
11:45 – 12:45 Break
12.45 Start grid of the Hankook 24H Dubai
14:00 Start of the Hankook 24H Dubai
20.00 Fireworks



Saturday 16 January 2016


14:00 Finish of the Hankook 24H Dubai
14:15 Publication of results
14.15 Podium ceremony (All Class Winners)



- Tony Lewis, Total Communications Dubai - also photos

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/audi-r8-lms-grid-hankook-24h-dubai-al-qubaisi---144584.html

14.01.2016 / MaP

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