The #28 HubAuto Corsa Ferrari 488 GT3 of Nick Foster, David Perel, and Hiroki Yoshida will start on pole position for tomorrow’s Suzuka 10 Hour race, after a day of qualifying that saw a fair bit of dramatics in the build up to the Pole Shootout – and Foster reigning supreme by 0.3 tenths with the fastest times in both stages of qualifying.
Q1 was split into three 15-minute segments, one for each of the teams’ three drivers, with the fastest 20 cars advancing on aggregate time.
In the first session, the 26-year-old Aussie Foster laid down the gauntlet, setting a fastest lap time of 2’02.355 that would hold up as the fastest time throughout all three stages of Q1.
Foster set the early benchmark on a 2’01.930 – the Aussie becoming the first driver to crack into the sub 2’02s range. On his following lap, he improved once again, the Brisbane native proving impervious in the Pole Shootout as he set the quickest time of 2’01.740.
It’s pole position for Ferrari – their first-ever overall pole in the Suzuka summer endurance race previously run as the Suzuka 1000km. The first for a Taiwanese-entered team, and the first for an Australian driver.
“We just had to work with what we had, and most importantly give David and Hiroki as much seat time as possible because of their limited experience here and in the car. There was a lot of work to get them up to speed but we wouldn’t be in this position without them setting the fast times they did in Q2 and Q3. They did the business, too.”
The HubAuto Racing #28 crew received a ¥1,000,000 prize (£7,000 GBP) for winning pole position.