The #8 Toyota TS050 of Fernando Alonso, Sébastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima will start Friday’s 1000 Miles of Sebring from pole position after posting the fastest times in qualifying. Fellow championship leaders Michael Christensen and Kévin Estre went fastest in GTE Pro ahead of the pair of Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK Ford GTs.
Fernando Alonso set a new qualifying lap record for the Sebring International Raceway, posting a 1:40.124 on the first of his two flying laps in the 20-minute qualifying session for LMP cars. Alonso’s teammate Kazuki Nakajima was the second-fastest driver in the session, producing an average lap time of 1:40.124.
Four tenths further behind was the sister #7 TS050 Hybrid of López/Conway/Kobayashi, who will start second on the grid. Third position in class went to the #3 Rebellion Racing R13 – Gibson of Berthon/Laurent/Menezes, whose fastest average lap time was 2.5 seconds off pole pace.
Jackie Chan DC Racing locked out the front row in LMP2, with the #38 crew of Tung/Aubry/Richelmi taking the pole by six tenths of a second thanks to a monster lap by Stéphane Richelmi. The sister #37 car was second-quickest in qualifying, followed by the #38 car’s closest title rivals in the #36 Signatech Alpine machine.
Porsche on top in GTE qualifying
GTE Pro pole went to the #92 Porsche GT Team drivers Michael Christensen and Kévin Estre for the first time this season. Their fastest average time of 1:57.500 was just one tenth faster than the #67 Ford GT of Andy Priulx, Harry Tincknell and Jonathan Bomarito, with the sister #66 Ford of Mücke/Pla/Johnson a further tenth behind in third position
The #82 BMW, #63 Corvette and #71 Corvette rounded out a top six separated by less than half a second on average lap time pace in qualifying.
Porsche also ruled the roost in GTE Am, with the #77 Dempsey-Proton Racing crew securing their third pole of the season with a fastest average lap time of 1:59.790. Starting second on the grid for tomorrow’s 1000 Miles of Sebring will be the Team Project 1 Porsche 911 RSR, which went second quickest with a 1:59.935 average.
Full results here.
Image #1 © JoaoFilipe/AdrenalMedia.com
Image #2 © WEC-Magazin / Ton Kerdijk