With not a lot of time between the two qualifying sessions it was hard work for the sidecar teams and mechanics to prepare for the second timed qualifying session, but all went well and all teams were up for the challenge on the 4,185km Le Mans-Bugatti circuit. With the temperature rising steadily through the day some teams were in two minds what tyres to fit, free practice in the morning was good for the softer compound tyres, but would a harder tyre be better suited to the rising temperature.
The Birchall Brothers Ben and Tom with their Michells of Mansfield, LCR Yamaha took it in their stride though and clocked a best time of 1:42.407 nearly 2 seconds faster than qualifying one. Pekka Paivarinta and Adolf Hanni, on their Team Suzuki Finland, LCR Suzuki were 0.826 down on the Birchall’s with a time of 1;43.233. Kurt Hock and Enrico Becker, Hock Racing, LCR Suzuki set a time of 1:45.175. The French team of Sebastien Delannoy and Sebastien Lavorel Team Sand SEB 72, LCR Suzuki improved their time as the session went on and they clocked a time of 1:45.969. Philippe Le Bail and Christian Chaigneau, Team TERCA, Auto Moto Suzuki set a time of 1:46.930. Gary and Daniel Knight had a exhalent qualifying on their Redline-RSR, Suzuki, sixth fastest time of 1:47.215. Jacob Rutz and Ueli Wafler, Team Rutz, LCR Yamaha had a trouble free qualifying and set a time of 1;47.464 just in front of Michael Grabmuller and Jonathan Huet, Delta Racing, LCR Kawasaki. Jean-Louis Hergott and Stephane Josse on their France oust Racing Team, RSR BMW set their fastest time of 1:47.980 in ninth place just in front of Petri Makkula and Harri Asumaniemi, Team Makkula, LCR Suzuki tenth with a time of 1:48.272.
So the 18 lap race tomorrow which has a start time of 12.15 should be a great race to finish the 2011 season and there will be a massive crowd cheering the teams on.
Photos: Mark "Wally" Walters