Audi fastest in FP1 at Fuji

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The #7 Audi R18 of Mar­cel Fässler, André Lot­ter­er and Benoit Tréluy­er fin­ished top of the time sheets in the first prac­tice ses­sion for Sunday’s 6 Hours of Fuji. Fässler was the quick­est man in the morn­ing ses­sion, post­ing a fastest lap of 1:25.030 in dry but cool con­di­tions at the Japan­ese track. The #6 Toy­ota TS050 Hybrid of Conway/Kobayashi/Sarrazin fin­ished sec­ond in the 90-minute sec­ond, with Kobayashi around half a sec­ond down on Fässler’s bench­mark.

The fastest Porsche could only man­age a 1:25.962 in the hands of Swiss Neel Jani, which put the #2 car in fifth posi­tion over­all. In LMP1-L, the #13 Rebel­lion Rac­ing machine held a slight advan­tage over the #4 ByKolles Rac­ing Team car of rough­ly six tenth of a sec­ond.

G-Dri­ve Rac­ing took the hon­ours in LMP2, after Alex Brun­dle went quick­est with a 1:33.204 on lap 16 of his 18-lap run. The #31 Extreme Speed Motor­sport Ligi­er JS P2 end­ed up in sec­ond posi­tion just two tenths of a sec­ond fur­ther back. Strak­ka Rac­ing, reduced to two dri­vers this week­end due to Nick Lev­en­tis suf­fer­ing from a lung infec­tion, round­ed off the top three.

First blood in GTE Pro went to the #67 Ford GT crew of Andy Pri­aulx and Har­ry Tinck­nell. Pri­aulx was the quick­est man of the ses­sion, post­ing a 1:39.216 – but his teammate’s fastest time was just 0.032 sec­onds slow­er. The #77 Dempsey Pro­ton Rac­ing showed encour­ag­ing pace after a dis­ap­point­ing sea­son so far, fin­ish­ing sec­ond on the time sheets. Fer­rari held the upper hand over Aston Mar­tin in the fight for cham­pi­onship hon­ours, with both AF Corse machines fin­ish­ing ahead of the Aston Mar­tins. Aston hold a six-point lead in the man­u­fac­tur­ers’ title going into the final three rounds.

Cham­pi­onship lead­ers AF Corse will be look­ing to cement their advan­tage in Japan, and the #83 car got off to a great start by fin­ish­ing first in the GTE Am stand­ings in FP1. Expe­ri­enced French­man Emmanuel Col­lard was the fastest man on the cir­cuit with a 1:40.775. The #98 Aston Mar­tin Rac­ing Van­tage V8 was sec­ond and the #50 Lar­bre Com­pe­ti­tion Corvette C7.R third.

Image © FIA WEC / Adren­al Media