It would appear that Audi's domination of the Le Mans 24 Hour race will continue this year as the German manufacturer swept the first three grid places in qualifying for Saturday's big race.
In addition to putting two hybrid diesel-powered cars on the front row, pole was set by Frenchman Loïc Duval, who is making his first appearance at Le Mans. This year's pole position was won with a lap time of 3m 22.349sec (242.5 km/h), which Duval set at the beginning of the first qualifying session on Wednesday night, and remained unbeaten on Thursday.
The 31 year-old Frenchman, driving the # 2 Audi R18 e-tron quattro is partnered with Le Mans record winners Tom Kristensen (Denmark) and Allan McNish (Scotland). It's also the eighth pole position for Audi at Le Mans.
Starting from position two will be the # 1 Audi R18 e-tron quattro of last year's winners Marcel Fässler (Switzerland), André Lotterer (Germany) and Benoît Tréluyer (France). While car # 3 is piloted byLe Mans newcomer Lucas di Grassi (Brazil), Marc Gené (Spain) and Oliver Jarvis (Great Britain), which secured third place.
Qualifying was interrupted with several red flag incidents, which reduced the time available for qualifying. Despite few dry laps, all three Audi teams managed to optimize their car's race set-up on Thursday night.
Before the race starts on Saturday there will be another 45min practice session in the morning's warm-up.