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Kevin Magnussen earns first IMSA pole, qualifying first for Ganassi in Detroit

Kevin Magnussen IMSA pole

Kevin Magnussen scored his first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship pole position, qualifying first for the Chevrolet Sports Car Classic at the Belle Isle Raceway in Detroit.

Magnussen, who also was the fastest overall in two practice sessions, turned a 1-minute, 20.031-second lap in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac around the 14-turn, 2.3-mile street course, topping the No. 55 Mazda driven by Harry Tincknell (1:20.052) and the No. 31 Cadillac qualified by Pipo Derani (1:20.161).

“Getting pole position for the team today means a lot,” said Magnussen, the Formula One veteran who is teamed with Renger van der Zande. “We went to Daytona, Chip Ganassi Racing and Cadillac put this team together in a rush, and we were quick straight away and in a fight for the win to the end when we had a tire blow out.

QUALIFYING: Click here for DPi l Click here for GTD

PRACTICE: Click here for Session I l Session II l Combined

“We were leading at Sebring and had that incident at the end. Mid-Ohio we had the fastest lap of the race, so it feels like we have been strong but haven’t been able to capitalize on that pace. It is good to get pole and start at the front. It is GM’s home track with Cadillac, so we are happy to start from pole.”

Rounding out the top six in DPi were Ricky Taylor (No. 10 Acura, 1:20.299); Tristan Vautier (No. 5 Cadillac, 1:20.532), who led the morning practice and Olivier Pla (No. 60 Acura, 1:21.455).

IMSA IN DETROIT: Full details for the Chevrolet Sports Car Classic

In GTD, Richard Hiestand qualified the No. 39 Peregrine Racing Audi R8 on the pole position with a lap of 1:30.597.

Frankie Montecalvo was second (1:30.617) in the No. 12 Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3. Roman De Angelis was third in the No. 23 Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage GT3 (1:30.671).

In GTLM (which is running as an exhibition class this weekend), the No. 4 Corvette C8.R of Nick Tandy beat the No. 3 of teammate Jordan Taylor by 0.323 seconds with a lap of 1:27.283.

Saturday race will begin at 5 p.m. ET on NBCSN.