WEC Spa: Toyota leads the way with 1-2 in final practice

Toyota topped final free practice for this weekend’s round of the World Endurance Championship at Spa-Francorchamps when its two cars undertook their usual qualification simulations.

WEC Spa: Toyota leads the way with 1-2 in final practice

Kamui Kobayashi and Brendon Hartley blocked out the first two positions in the times when they went out on fresh rubber and with a low fuel load at the beginning of the 60-minute third practice session on Friday afternoon.

Hartley was initially fastest with a 2m03.427s in the #8 Toyota GR010 HYBRID before Kobayashi trumped it with a 2m03.225s to go fastest by two tenths in the #7 entry.

It was the first time that one of the five cars in the Hypercar class had emerged quickest during practice for Saturday’s Spa 6 Hours.

Kobayashi’s time compared with previous Hypercar best, a 2m04.064s from Olivier Pla aboard the solo Glickenhaus-Pipo 007 LMH in second free practice.

Prema took top spot in LMP2 courtesy of a 2m04.254, the fastest time in class of the weekend so far, from Louis Deletraz aboard the Italian team’s ORECA-Gibson 07.

That left the Swiss just over a second behind Kobayashi’s session best.

The grandfathered Alpine LMP1 claimed fourth position overall and third in Hypercar courtesy 2m04.790s from Andre Negaro.

#36 Alpine ELF Team Alpine A480  Gibson Hypercar of André Negrão, Nicolas Lapierre, Matthieu Vaxiviere

#36 Alpine ELF Team Alpine A480 Gibson Hypercar of André Negrão, Nicolas Lapierre, Matthieu Vaxiviere

Photo by: JEP / Motorsport Images

The winning car from the Sebring season-opener in March was a second and a half off the pace after a Balance of Performance change for his race.

The #31 WRT ORECA that topped opening practice on Thursday took second in class in final practice with a 2m04.823s from Robin Frijns.

That gave him a margin of just over a tenth from the sixth-placed United Autosports ORECA in which Filipe Albuquerque posted a 2m04.902s.

The best of the Jota-entered ORECAs claimed seventh with Will Stevens driving and the Team Penske entry in eighth courtesy Felipe Nasr’s best lap.

The Glickenhaus 007 Le Mans brought up the rear of the Hypercar field down in 15th place overall after Pipo Derani went off at Stavelot and beached the car early in the session.

#92 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR  19 LMGTE Pro of Michael Christensen, Kevin Estre

#92 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR 19 LMGTE Pro of Michael Christensen, Kevin Estre

Photo by: JEP / Motorsport Images

Porsche took the first two spots in GTE Pro with it pair of Manthey-run factory 911 RSRs, with Michael Christensen’s 2m13.102s put him nearly half a second up on team-mate Gianmaria Bruni, who managed a 2m13.545s.

The best of the factory Ferrari 488 GT3 Evos run by AF Corse was another half a second in arrears.

Alessandro Pier Guidi posted a 2m14.103s to just shade Miguel Molina in the sister car, with Nick Tandy was just a tenth behind the Corvette.

Mikkel Pedersen was fastest in GTE Am for the Project 1 Porsche team.

Qualifying for Saturday’s Spa 6 Hours, round two of this year’s WEC, begins at 18:20 local time on Friday evening.

WEC 6 Hours of Spa - FP3 results:

Cla # Drivers Car Class Time Gap
1 7 United Kingdom Mike Conway
Japan Kamui Kobayashi
Argentina Jose Maria Lopez
Toyota GR010 - Hybrid HYPERCAR 2'03.225  
2 8 Switzerland Sébastien Buemi
New Zealand Brendon Hartley
Japan Ryo Hirakawa
Toyota GR010 - Hybrid HYPERCAR 2'03.427 0.202
3 9 Poland Robert Kubica
Switzerland Louis Deletraz
Italy Lorenzo Colombo
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'04.254 1.029
4 36 Brazil Andre Negrao
France Nicolas Lapierre
France Matthieu Vaxiviere
Alpine A480 HYPERCAR 2'04.790 1.565
5 31 Indonesia Sean Gelael
Netherlands Robin Frijns
Germany René Rast
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'04.823 1.598
6 22 United Kingdom Philip Hanson
Portugal Filipe Albuquerque
United States Will Owen
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'04.902 1.677
7 38 Mexico Roberto Gonzalez
Portugal Antonio Felix da Costa
United Kingdom Will Stevens
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'04.987 1.762
8 5 United States Dane Cameron
France Emmanuel Collard
Brazil Felipe Nasr
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.045 1.820
9 83 France François Perrodo
Denmark Nicklas Nielsen
Italy Alessio Rovera
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.173 1.948
10 10 Switzerland Nico Müller
Ireland Ryan Cullen
France Sébastien Bourdais
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.181 1.956
11 41 Portugal Rui Andrade
Austria Ferdinand Habsburg
France Norman Nato
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.219 1.994
12 1 France Lilou Wadoux
France Sébastien Ogier
France Charles Milesi
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.305 2.080
13 45 United States Thomas Steven
Australia James Allen
Austria Rene Binder
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.432 2.207
14 28 Denmark Oliver Rasmussen
United Arab Emirates Ed Jones
South Africa Jonathan Aberdein
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.511 2.286
15 708 France Olivier Pla
France Romain Dumas
Brazil Pipo Derani
Glickenhaus 007 LMH HYPERCAR 2'05.525 2.300
16 23 United Kingdom Alex Lynn
United Kingdom Oliver Jarvis
United States Josh Pierson
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.556 2.331
17 34 Poland Jakub Smiechowski
United Kingdom Alex Brundle
Mexico Esteban Gutierrez
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.967 2.742
18 35 France Jean Baptiste Lahaye
France Matthieu Lahaye
France François Heriau
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'06.546 3.321
19 44 Slovakia Miro Konopka
Netherlands Tijmen van der Helm
Netherlands Bent Viscaal
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'07.045 3.820
20 92 Denmark Michael Christensen
France Kevin Estre
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE PRO 2'13.102 9.877
21 91 Italy Gianmaria Bruni
Austria Richard Lietz
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE PRO 2'13.545 10.320
22 51 Italy Alessandro Pier Guidi
United Kingdom James Calado
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE PRO 2'14.103 10.878
23 52 Spain Miguel Molina
Italy Antonio Fuoco
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE PRO 2'14.172 10.947
24 64 United States Tommy Milner
United Kingdom Nick Tandy
Chevrolet Corvette C8.R LMGTE PRO 2'14.262 11.037
25 46 Italy Matteo Cairoli
Denmark Mikkel Pedersen
Switzerland Nicolas Leutwiler
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE AM 2'15.351 12.126
26 77 Germany Christian Ried
United Kingdom Sebastian Priaulx
United Kingdom Harry Tincknell
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE AM 2'15.970 12.745
27 33 United States Ben Keating
Portugal Henrique Chaves Jr.
Denmark Marco Sorensen
Aston Martin Vantage AMR LMGTE AM 2'16.134 12.909
28 56 United States Brendan Iribe
United Kingdom Ollie Millroy
United Kingdom Ben Barnicoat
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE AM 2'16.298 13.073
29 88 United States Fred Poordad
United States Patrick Lindsey
Belgium Jan Heylen
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE AM 2'16.313 13.088
30 21 France Simon Mann
Switzerland Christoph Ulrich
Finland Toni Vilander
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'16.600 13.375
31 777 Japan Satoshi Hoshino
Japan Tomonobu Fujii
United Kingdom Charlie Fagg
Aston Martin Vantage AMR LMGTE AM 2'16.710 13.485
32 54 Switzerland Thomas Flohr
Italy Francesco Castellacci
New Zealand Nick Cassidy
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'16.844 13.619
33 85 Switzerland Rahel Frey
Denmark Michelle Gatting
Belgium Sarah Bovy
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'16.948 13.723
34 98 Canada Paul Dalla Lana
United Kingdom David Pittard
Denmark Nicki Thiim
Aston Martin Vantage AMR LMGTE AM 2'17.004 13.779
35 60 Italy Claudio Schiavoni
Italy Matteo Cressoni
Italy Giancarlo Fisichella
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'17.332 14.107
36 71 France Franck Dezoteux
France Pierre Ragues
France Gabriel Aubry
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'17.451 14.226
37 86 United Kingdom Michael Wainwright
Italy Riccardo Pera
United Kingdom Benjamin Barker
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE AM 2'17.531 14.306
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