Loic Duval’s time set in the opening qualifying session on Wednesday proved sufficient for pole as the Frenchman impressed ahead of his first Le Mans weekend as team-mate to experienced duo Allan McNish and Tom Kristensen.
Briton McNish, bidding for his third Le Mans triumph this weekend, said: “It has been a hard few weeks in preparation for this race, but an Audi one-two-three in qualifying is the perfect start.
“There is no better place than starting a race from pole. Loic’s lap time on a very dirty circuit was immense.
“We all feel comfortable with our car – we’re in good shape for the 24 hours despite weather conditions playing a big hand over the past two days.”
With a sharp downpour and a slew of red flags interrupting Thursday’s final qualifying session, Duval’s best lap of three minutes 22.349 seconds around the 8.47-mile track was sufficient to seal Audi’s third pole in a row and eighth in total at La Sarthe.
Duval’s time was a full 1.3 seconds clear of the second-placed R18 e-tron quattro of reigning two-time Le Mans winners Andre Lotterer, Marcel Fassler and Benoit Treluyer.