After a messy qualifying session,Performance Tech Motorsports captured the pole position for Round 7 of the Cooper Tires Prototype Lights Powered by Mazda on Friday at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, as Hayden Duerson took the top spot.
"It feels like a long time coming this season," Duerson said. "We've been so competitive so many times and have had such bad luck. From last race having the suspension go to the race before that having caught fire. It's just great for the Performance Tech team; I've been wanting this all season. Hopefully we can turn it into a win tomorrow."
Drivers were forced to turn their hot laps quickly as nearly 10 minutes of the 20-minute session was wiped away by an early red flag. Situation aside, Performance Tech's rising stars found themselves on the top of the time charts in qualifying. Rookie Duerson landed the first pole position of his career in the series, followed by Robert Alon, who had his best qualifying efforts of the season landing in fourth.
"Turned out better than I expected," Alon said. "As usual, Performance Tech obviously knows what they are doing. The No. 10 car kind of popped on me on my hot lap. But regardless I think we did all right in the end."
Craig Duerson was hot on Alon's heels in fifth place, winning the pole position in Masters.
"A great team effort once again," Duerson said. "We're really feeding off one another with car setup, and we're just working well as a team. I'm really happy for Robert and Hayden. I didn't throw down a lap when I needed to. I'm very comfortable with the track and my race conditions. I've been up front in all my practices. Now it's just a little racecraft, and hopefully the old man will be there."
Joel Janco qualified 10th in the L1 category and third in Masters.
"It was really greasy compared to this morning," Janco said. "So it was like driving a completely different track. We wound up about where we were in practice and we were third in Masters, which was good for us, and we're pretty happy. I'm looking forward to tomorrow."
This is the second time this season Team Principal Brent O'Neill has seen one of his drivers take home the pole position. With everyone performing well, he is at ease for the upcoming races on the difficult 10-turn, 2.459-mile CTMP track.
"Good qualifying effort by Hayden and the whole team," O'Neill said. "We're P1, four and five. I think we're going to have a good race car for tomorrow. Hayden did an awesome job; he's getting better and better. Robert now qualifying in the top in P4, it shows that are two younger guys are moving toward the front of the field. It was a good effort by everybody. Now we just get ready for the race tomorrow."
Masters competitor Jon Brownson will not participate in this event with the team after a mishap in a test day earlier this week.
"Jon had a big one in Turn 2 during testing and jammed his shoulder pretty hard, and we decided it was better off just parking it," O'Neill said. "He's going to rest up and get ready for Road America."
The 30-minute Race 1 takes place at 6:45 p.m. Saturday, July 12, and the 45-minute Race 2 is scheduled for 9:50 a.m. Sunday, July 13. Follow live timing and scoring atscoring.imsa.com/prototype-lites/ and also follow the action live at @IMSALive on Twitter.