After taking the top spot in all free practice sessions, Porsche were unable to dominate a very tricky qualifying. Audi Sport Team Joest scored a one-two with Marcel Fässler putting the #7 on pole with a 1:39.444 and the sister car of Oliver Jarvis 0.266 seconds behind with a 1:39.710. André Lotterer commented ‘It feels good for the whole team after a tough Le Mans, it’s good for the spirit. I’m sure Benoit is gutted he is not here.’
The #1 Porsche 919 Hybrid of Mark Webber took third with Marc Lieb taking the fourth spot for the #2. Toyota Gazoo Racing completed a two by two for the works teams with #6 and #5 taking fifth and sixth respectively.
With cars all over the place as grip started to disappear as the heavens opened, LMP2 driver René Rast claimed pole for the #26 G-Drive with a 1:48.984. Gustavo Menezes in the #36 Signatech Alpine took second, whilst WEC debutant Lewis Williamson put his #42 Strakka Racing Gibson 015S into third.
With a track wet and dry in places, it was a difficult time for the teams, with drivers being on the wrong tyres towards the end of the session as the sun tried to come through and the track most definitely started to dry out. With 5 minutes to go the gap was 0.054 between the top 3 cars. The pit lane became crowded with last minute driver and tyre changes, with pole position changing almost every time a car crossed the line.
Finally, the #95 Aston Martin GTE Pro of Nicki Thiim and Marco Sørensen took pole with a time of 2:01.712. Stefan Mücke and Olivier Pla brought the #66 Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK into second place with a 2:01.959 and rounding up the top three was the Richie Stanaway and Darren Turner #97 Aston Martin.
The LM GTE Am class was a one-two for Porsche with Pat Long putting the #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing 911 RSR onto pole with a 2:06.011, and the #78 KCMG Porsche of Germany’s Wolf Henzler second with a 2:06.197. The Aston Martin #98 of Paul Dalla Lana put in a 2:06.372 to take third.
A job well done by all in a truly thrilling qualifying session for the 6 Hours of Nurburgring. Race starts at 13:00 local time.