Tag Archives: Porsche

Porsche and G-Drive Racing Take Provisional Poles At Busy Le Mans Qualifying

The #2 Porsche 919 Hybrid with Neel Jani at the wheel took provisional pole with a 3:19.733 in a two-hour qualifying practice that took on extra significance because of the weather.

In a week that has seen torrential downpours at some stage every day and with more bad weather forecast, many teams were looking to put in a ‘banker lap’ in the first qualifying session on the basis that better opportunities may not be available.

The #1 Porsche was second quickest with a 3:20.203 lap time set by Timo Bernhard. The #6 Toyota Gazoo racing Toyota TS050 – Hybrid was third quickest with a 3:30.737 set by Stephane Sarazin. Although some of the Toyota drivers made it plain that they were using the session to establish a race balance and were not looking to make headlines, clearly the issue of the weather was on everyone’s mind.

In LMP2 the #26 G-Drive Racing Nissan-powered ORECA 05 set an early provisional class pole time of 3:36.605 with René Rast driving and that was never bettered throughout the rest of the session. Nelson Panciatici was second quickest in the #35 Baxi DC Racing Alpine A460 with a 3:37.225. Rounding out the top three in LMP2 was the second Alpine A460, this time the #36 Signatech Alpine where Nicolas Lapierre set a 3:37.225.

The #68 and #69 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA Ford GTs were quickest in LMGTE Pro. Dirk Muller in #68 car set a 3:51.185 whilst Ryan Briscoe was less than half a second behind with a 3:51.497. The #51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE in the hands of Gianmaria Bruni was third quickest with a 3:51.568.

In LM GTE Am Clearwater Racing with the #61 Ferrari 458 Italia took provisional class pole with Rob Bell driving with a 3:56.827. Pedro Lamy in the #98 Aston Martin Racing Vantage was second quickest with a 37.198. Closing out the top three in class was the #55 AF Corse Ferrari 458 Italia which set a 3:57.596 with Matt Griffin driving.

Although Thursday morning’s forecast was for light rain with the risk of thunderstorms, there were deluges in various areas close to the circuit so many teams must be looking nervously at the two two-hour qualifying sessions this evening, the first of which starts at 19:00.

Porsche Tops Timesheets At Le Mans Practise

As track action started in earnest, it was Porsche who took first blood after Neel Jani set the fastest time of the session in the last hour of the four-hour practise session on June 15 with a 3:22.011 in the #2 Porsche 919 Hybrid. .

Second quickest was the #1 Porsche 919 Hybrid with a 3:22.550 set by Mark Webber earlier in the afternoon.

Rounding out the top three in the LMP1 class was the #8 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 in which Lucas di Grassi set a 3:22.985 before the car was pushed back into the garage for some work on a damper.

In the LMP2 class last year’s class winners KCMG set the fastest time of the session with a 3:39.133 with Richard Bradley at the wheel. The #36 Signatech Alpine A460 was second quickest with a 3:39.721 set by Stephane Richelmi. Third quickest was the #23 Panis Barthez Compétition Ligier JS P2 when Paul-Loup Chatin set a 3:40.308.

Ferrari set the top two quickest times in LM GTE Pro when the #51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE driven by Gianmaria Bruni set a 3:53.833. Second quickest with a 3:54.180 was the #82 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTE with Toni Vilander at the wheel. Third quickest, with a 3:55.436 was the first of the Ford GTs, the #68 car, with Sébastien Bourdais driving.

In LM GTE Am it was Clearwater Racing in the #61 Ferrari 458 Italia which set the pace when Robb Bell set a 3:57.543. The #62 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia was second quickest with a 3:59.103 with Townsend Bell at the wheel. Rounding out the top three in class was the #83 AF Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia when Emmanuel Collard set a 3:59.294 in his 22nd appearance at the French classic.

The first qualifying session starts at 22:00 local time and runs for two hours.