Michael Christensen believes the new Hyperpole qualifying format should eliminate unexpected qualifying upset due to the lessened amount of traffic out on track.
Hyperpole which will take place on Friday morning, will see the top six in each class out on track to battle for pole position, as opposed the more traditional format that sees every team out on track at the same time.
“I hope it gives less room for unexpected results to happen,” Christensen exclusively told MotorsportWeek.com speaking on behalf of Porsche partner Mobil1. “What I mean is that there is less traffic so usually there should be no traffic on that lap. So you should really see who is fastest, and hopefully you’ll get a chance to go for pole without traffic and so on, which is usually a big thing here for the last few years.
For sure, you have a lot of time to put in a pole lap because there’s many hours of qualifying the past years, here it’s only thirty minutes I think for Hyperpole, but at least there’s no traffic.
So you have one shot, probably, maybe two but hopefully without traffic and then you would see who is the fastest without any slip stream or traffic. So I think it’s a good thing. Good feature.”
The Dane went on to explain that the chance of having a tow down the Mulsanne Straight from one of the prototype runners will be a lot smaller, which should lead to smaller gaps between the cars.
“There’s still a chance of having traffic, for sure, but much less now,” Christensen continued. “I think it’s only one third of the grid would be there for the Hyperpole, and it’s a big track. I would say that it can happen, but it shouldn’t.
“In the past, the thing is that you could really get unlucky with the traffic or you could get super lucky having a tow from an LMP car each straight so you had huge, massive slipstream, which is a lot of lap time here.
“And then you have the other guys who have traffic so that would make a big split in terms of gaps between the cars after qualifying in the past. This should eliminate that a little bit.”