New Qualifying Format at Infineon Raceway This Weekend
The American Le Mans Series will introduce a new form of "single-car" qualifying for this weekend's Infineon Grand Prix of Sonoma at Infineon Raceway.

This trial (one event only at the moment) is designed to increase the drama of competition for the New Century Mortgage FastQual Award by giving drivers more of an opportunity to post their best lap times on a track clear of traffic.

But unlike single-car qualifying formats used in many other racing series, the format for the American Le Mans Series will have multiple cars on the track at the same time, dispatched individually at specific intervals timed to maximize the opportunity for each car to have clear track. The spacing of the cars will also create better opportunities for individual car / driver television coverage as well as coverage by the
American Le Mans Series Radio Web.

The cars will be lined up for qualifying in reverse order of the fastest lap achieved by each car in the practice session immediately prior to qualifying. The fastest cars will therefore be placed at the end of the line, building drama during the qualifying session while drivers compete for the overall pole as well as individual class poles. Each car will get a total of four laps on the track during the qualifying session,
including its out lap, two flying laps and its in lap.

"The American Le Mans Series has always been for the fans, and we have been looking at ways of increasing the excitement for fans during qualifying at our events," said Scott Atherton, President and CEO of the ALMS. "The system we are introducing this weekend at Sonoma is the result of many hours of research and planning, as well as consultation with our race teams, manufacturers and sponsors. We look forward to seeing the format in action but also stress that this is a one-race
trial."

Mike Pickup at PK Sport is more than happy to try out the new system. “It’s typical of the way they do things in the ALMS – they’re going to try it this weekend and see how well it works. I’m more than happy to go along with that.”

Each of the four American Le Mans Series class pole winners receives $1,000 from New Century Mortgage.

 

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