Drayson Racing will start its first Le Mans 24 Hours from inside the top ten in GT2 after the lone Aston Martin V8 Vantage in the field qualified ninth in class.

Johnny Cocker posted the quickest time for the team shortly after the start of the second phase of qualifying with a lap of 4min 06.482secs, despite problems for the Aston Martin crew earlier in the evening.

Cocker had reported that the throttle had stuck wide-open entering the Mulsanne Corner, but he managed to bring the car to a safe stop, undamaged. Unfazed, he re-started the car and continued to pit lane where the crew quickly diagnosed the issue.

"We had a problem where the throttle stuck open and it happened just under braking going into Mulsanne Corner," Cocker said, "not really the ideal place for it to happen! I was able to get it stopped without any damage. The guys found a little problem and resolved the issue. I think we got away lightly with that one.

"I am really happy with the lap. It was probably one of the best laps I've ever done. There weren't any mistakes, I felt like I got a clear lap and absolutely got the best out of the car. But, there is still obviously work to do. To be just three seconds off at Le Mans, such a long circuit, on our first go is not bad. I am looking forward to the start now. It is a long race and we just need to make sure we make it to the end."

Both Cocker and team owner Paul Drayson will be making their debut at La Sarthe, and the team chief said he was happy with the way the week had panned out ahead of Saturday's start.

"I am ready for the race of my life," he said. "Le Mans has lived up to its reputation with the changing conditions over the past few days but everyone in the team has done a great job to put Drayson Racing ninth on the grid for our debut at Le Mans."