Simon Pagenaud has taken his second straight pole position - and third of the season for de Ferran Motorsports and Acura - with a record qualifying run for the American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix at Lime Rock.

Pagenaud set an LMP1 record with a lap of 46.971secs in de Ferran's XM-backed Acura. His time was just good enough to edge out Patr?n Highcroft Racing's David Brabham by 0.374 seconds.

"Today was a good day for me," said Pagenaud, who just lost out to Brabham in Lime Rock qualifying last year. "In the first few laps I was trying to get good heat in the tires. I was concerned with the red flag but once it went green, I went out there and it was a good lap."

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Pagenaud and team-mate and team owner de Ferran have won the last two rounds on two different types of tracks - the short and narrow streets of Long Beach and the wide-open spaces at Utah. So it's obvious that they feel comfortable no matter the layout.

That may be bad news for the rest of the field, even Brabham and the rest of Patr?n Highcroft Racing. Brabham and Scott Sharp were overall winners here last year, the first overall win for the team and also for Acura.

Corsa Motorsports' Ginetta-Zytek 09HS hybrid prototype of Johnny Mowlem and Stefan Johannson will start third in P1 and sixth overall. Mowlem turned in a best lap of 49.464secs.

Usually drivers will say that starting out front isn't a particularly huge advantage. But given the tight and twisty nature of the Lime Rock layout, Pagenaud said being out front means a better chance of staying out of trouble.

"There will be major issues with the traffic in the race," he said. "It's important to be on the inside of the first corner here. It is a lot quicker than you think. This track can be dirty on the outside line, so it is quite an advantage to be on the inside. You are almost better off being third and on the inside than second and on the outside. Because it is a very short track, there is a very short time to breathe. You see the car up front and you are already up behind him. It is very difficult to think about it and you have to go on instinct."

Adrian Fernandez kept Lowe's Fernandez Racing five-for-five in LMP2 qualifying this season with his third class pole of the season. Next up is keeping the team perfect in races.

Fernandez set a time of 48.281secs in the Acura ARX-01b that he will share with Luis Diaz. Lime Rock will make the fourth straight race that Acuras swept prototype pole positions and will start 1-2-3. The Mexican racing legend went 0.196 seconds faster than Dyson Racing's Marino Franchitti in one of the team's Mazda-powered Lola B09/86 coupes

"Dyson is getting closer. They were two-tenths away," said Fernandez, who owns a commanding 45-point championship lead with Diaz in P2. "They were a little slower in practice but they always seem to do better in qualifying. Our cars work well with cold tires. So we new we had to leave the pits fast to get heat in them as quickly as possible."

Jaime Melo snagged the GT2 pole position for Risi Competizione and Ferrari, the first at Lime Rock for the Italian marque since 2004. Melo and Flying Lizard Motorsports' Patrick Long went back-and-forth for the top spot, and Melo re-entered the track after Long set his fastest lap. He outpaced his Porsche rival by 0.064 seconds.

Melo's time of 54.665secs came a month after he, Lime Rock team-mate Pierre Kaffer and Mika Salo won for the second straight year at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The trio also won the 57th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring to start the season, but Risi hasn't won in the Series since.

"I had a good run, especially the second run. Maybe I was a little over the edge," Melo said. "We had some brake issues in the second practice and we didn't know how competitive we would be in qualifying. After my first fast lap I came in to check the tire pressure and see how things were shaking out. It was unbelievable. I didn't expect to go faster than 44.7, especially when I missed the first chicane. The car has really good balance."

Bob Faieta won the Challenge class pole for Gruppe Orange. The class, in its second race, features Yokohama-shod Porsche 911 GT3 Cup entries. Faieta's best lap of 59.618secs was 0.353 seconds better than Martin Snow in the Snow Racing entry.

"I expect there to be a lot of tough competition within our class," Faieta said. "I've got a good partner in Wesley and a great team in Gruppe Orange. I've known Wes for awhile but we just recently started driving together."