WEC prologue: Toyota enjoys five-second lead over LMP1 privateers

Toyota ended the first daytime session of the 2018 FIA World Endurance Championship Prologue test with an advantage of over five seconds over the best of its privateer LMP1 rivals

WEC prologue: Toyota enjoys five-second lead over LMP1 privateers

After taking over the high-downforce spec #8 Toyota TS050 Hybrid, Mike Conway posted the quickest time of the day at Paul Ricard, a 1m32.662s, in the penultimate hour.

That was 1.993s quicker than the Le Mans-spec #7 car, with that machine's best time set by reserve driver Anthony Davidson, and 5.466s up on the quickest of the LMP1 privateers, the #11 SMP Racing BR1-AER.

The Dallara-built BR1s held a one-two among the privateer contingent, with Matevos Isaakyan in the sister #17 car ending up 0.058s shy of squad-mate Mikhail Aleshin.

Rebellion's sole R-13-Gibson was fifth-fastest with Andre Lotterer at the wheel, three tenths behind the SMP cars, while Ben Hanley was sixth in the DragonSpeed-run BR1.

New Manor signing Alex Brundle was seventh in the only Mecachrome-powered Ginetta G60-LT-P1 to run during the daytime session, ahead of Oliver Webb in the ByKolles ENSO CLM P1/01-Nissan.

Ex-Formula 1 driver Pastor Maldonado led the way in the LMP2 class in the DragonSpeed ORECA 07 with a best time of 1m40.771s.

Maldonado beat TDS Racing ORECA driver Matthieu Vaxiviere by 0.456s, while Andre Negrao was third-quickest in the Alpine-badged Signatech ORECA.

Porsche enjoyed an advantage in the GTE Pro class, as Richard Lietz improved to a best time of 1m51.650s in the afternoon running.

That was enough to beat the best of the Ganassi-run Ford GTs, the #67 of Harry Tincknell, by 0.360s.

Olivier Pla was third-fastest in the #66 Ford, ahead of the second Porsche and the best of the AF Corse-run Ferrari 488s.

Aston Martin managed no better than sixth with the quicker of its two new Vantage GTEs, while the best of the two BMW M8s was eighth fastest behind the second Ferrari.

Porsche junior Matt Campbell set the pace in the GTE Am class with a best time of 1m53.515s in the #77 Dempsey-Proton 911 RSR.

The #5 Ginetta and the #10 DragonSpeed cars have been added to the list of 13 cars that will take advantage of the 30-hour test allocation and run continuously through the night.

For the remaining competitors, action resumes at 0900 on Saturday morning and concludes at 1600.

shares
comments
TVR's partnership with Rebellion could cover its Le Mans return aim
Previous article

TVR's partnership with Rebellion could cover its Le Mans return aim

Next article

Toyota ran outside of rules when setting best times at WEC testing

Toyota ran outside of rules when setting best times at WEC testing
How Formula E's double-duty drivers influenced their Le Mans teams' fortunes Plus

How Formula E's double-duty drivers influenced their Le Mans teams' fortunes

Eight Formula E drivers made the 7,000-mile sprint from the streets of Jakarta to the fabled Circuit de la Sarthe and every one had a story to share at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours. Despite a range of triumphs and disappointments, each driver doubling up on the day job played a key role in their teams' fortunes

Le Mans
Jun 14, 2022
How an Italian junior formula giant is readying for its Le Mans future Plus

How an Italian junior formula giant is readying for its Le Mans future

Prema remains a colossus in single-seaters, but the serial Formula 2 and Formula 3 title-winning squad has joined forces with top GT squad Iron Lynx for an attack on sportscars in the World Endurance Championship and European Le Mans Series. Ahead of its debut at the Le Mans 24 Hours, its sights are firmly fixed on LMP2 glory – and a future in Hypercars next year...

Le Mans
Jun 8, 2022
The British rookies targeting a good first impression at Le Mans Plus

The British rookies targeting a good first impression at Le Mans

Three young Britons will make their first starts in the Le Mans 24 Hours this weekend in the highly-competitive 23-car GTE Am field. But how did they get here? Autosport hears their stories.

Le Mans
Jun 7, 2022
The wingless wonder Peugeot hopes will restore it to Le Mans glory Plus

The wingless wonder Peugeot hopes will restore it to Le Mans glory

Peugeot went radical with the initial plan for its Le Mans Hypercar project, and then stuck to its guns. Here’s how things are shaping up a few weeks before the debut of the 9X8 in next month's Monza World Endurance Championship round

WEC
Jun 1, 2022
How Toyota’s sole survivor turned the tables at Spa Plus

How Toyota’s sole survivor turned the tables at Spa

After a chastening opening to the season at Sebring that ended in an enormous accident, Toyota's #7 crew got their World Endurance Championship underway with victory at a treacherously slippery Spa to make up for its sister car's Sebring defeat to Alpine, as Glickenhaus's promising qualifying turned to disaster in the race

WEC
May 9, 2022
The Chinese sportscar protege targeting a path to the top with Porsche Plus

The Chinese sportscar protege targeting a path to the top with Porsche

Yifei Ye came within one lap of winning the LMP2 class on his Le Mans 24 Hours debut last year, and his eye-catching 2021 has gained Porsche’s interest. With the German manufacturer preparing for a return to the top tier, the Chinese youngster is on the path to join it

WEC
Apr 14, 2022
How WEC got off to a stormy start in 2022 as rulemakers dampen Toyota's dominance Plus

How WEC got off to a stormy start in 2022 as rulemakers dampen Toyota's dominance

Toyota’s stranglehold on the World Endurance Championship ended at the 2022 opener at Sebring, but all accusing eyes were on the Balance of Performance system as the key to the shake-up. Here's how it unfolded, to see Alpine celebrating under a stormy sky having blown away the defending champions

WEC
Mar 21, 2022
Why Penske remains ambitious for its WEC learning year Plus

Why Penske remains ambitious for its WEC learning year

Team Penske is gearing up for its role in running Porsche’s LMDh programme from 2023 by entering this year's World Endurance Championship with an LMP2 car. Although the team is considering 2022 as a season to learn, it is no less serious about winning than ever - which should make the already fiercely competitive class even more so

WEC
Mar 17, 2022