AUSTIN, Texas - The Alex Job Racing teammates Alex Riberas (Spain) and Mario Farnbacher (Germany) will start from the GTD class front row in Saturday's IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship Lone Star Le Mans at the Circuit of The Americas (COTA).
Riberas was behind the wheel of the No. 23 The Heart of Racing Porsche for the 15 minute GTD qualifying session. Early on, he set the pace with a 2:09.077 around the 3.4 mile undulating road course. By the end of the session, he captured the team's fourth pole of the season with a 2:08.568 lap time. What made Riberas' pole-winning effort more impressive is that he did not have any data in the car that showed him is lap times. This means he had no idea how fast he was going relative to his previous lap times.
"It was absolutely magnificent effort by the Heart of Racing Crew and Alex Job Racing," Riberas said after qualifying. "To be honest, I did not know what my lap times were. I was completely blind. I had no lap times or reference laps. Every lap, I asked my team, 'am I getting faster or slower.' Everyone is pushing hard to be competitive and we knew would come here with a strong package. This track is suiting us. Now that we are on the pole for tomorrow, we'll now focus on the win. We have a good chance to win the race tomorrow."
"He [Riberas] did some amazing laps," Farnbacher said. "I'm glad he put us on the pole for tomorrow's race. It's the first step as we continue to fight for the Championship. Now, we need to go get a good result tomorrow."
"Alex has done a great job all year long," Team Owner Alex Job said. "This is a race track he's been to before. He actually won the SuperCup race here last year at the Formula 1 weekend. So, he knows this place, but some of the other tracks he hasn't. He's been such a quick study to learn the race tracks.
"He was running blind because, for some reason, the dash wasn't working. He wasn't sure where he was. We tried to keep him updated. He did the job we needed him to do and got the job done. We'll start from the front tomorrow, which is where we needed to be."
The WeatherTech Sports Car Championship Lone Star Le Mans will be broadcast on FOX Sports 2 starting at 1:30 p.m. ET. Live timing and scoring can be viewed at IMSA.com.
The Heart of Racing
Founded in 1996, by Don and Donna Kitch, Team Seattle and The Heart of Racing is a group of sports car road racing fans, drivers, and corporate partners making a difference in our community by combining two passions: A love of motorsports and a commitment to Seattle Children's Hospital and pediatric cardiac health care nationally. The team uses the promotion and exposure of the racing program to fund raise and increase awareness of the financial needs for quality pediatric medical care. Since inception, Team Seattle has generated over $5.5 million for their cause. The Heart of Racing accepts donations and pledges for Seattle Children's Hospital at teamseattle.com.
Alex Job Racing
Alex Job Racing is one of the most successful teams in sports car racing with 70 wins (since 1995); including two Rolex 24 GT Class wins in 1999 and 2013. This record is supported by 48 pole positions and 106 podium finishes. The team has won five championships (GTC 2013, 2012, GT in 2004, 2003 and 2002) complimented by their two GT class wins at Le Mans. The team also boasts ten Sebring 12-hour wins.
IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship
The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTD (GT Daytona) Class is made up of some the world's most sophisticated cars, including the Porsche 911 GT3 R, Ferrari 488 GTB, Lamborghini Huracan, Aston Martin DB9, BMW M6, Viper SRT and Audi R8 LMS. All GTD Class cars run on the spec Continental tire.