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LM24: Qualifying

All teams had one hour to set their qualifying times, with the fastest six in each class then going through to tomorrow's Hyperpole session to confirm the leading positions on the grid. For the others, it is a case of starting on the grid in the position achieved tonight.

In the first 30 minutes, the busiest people seems to be Race Director Eduardo Freitas and the orange army of commissaires, with the IDEC Sport #48, AMR #98, and Iron Lynx #85 all leaving the track and needing to be recovered. As a result, slow zones were needed which eliminated any chance of setting competitive times while they were active.


With just five cars in class, all entries are automatically going through, but Toyota #7 took the class fastest time of 3:26.279, achieving a time some three seconds quicker than in either testing or FP1. The Alpine #36 finished second, 0.8 seconds behind, with Toyota #8 another half second behind. Both Glickenhaus's were close behind.


Antonio Felix de Costa went from zero (accident in FP1) to hero with fastest time in the JOTA Sport #38, beating the G-Drive #26 and the Team WRT #41. Also qualifying for Hyperpole are the Panis Racing #65, and the #23 and #32 United Autosport cars.

Strong words were seen exchanged in the pits between the crews of #22 United Autosport and #85 GR Racing teams, at the end of the session after #22 failed to go through. While exact details are currently not known, the timing screens had gone purple for the first two sectors, but the car was then picked up on screen running through the Porsche curves off the pace; speculation would suggest the prototype being held up at an important moment.


AF Corse scored a 1-2 in qualifying, the #52 Ferrari of Daniel Serra achieving a best lap on 3m46.011, half a second ahead of the #51 sister car. For once, Kevin Estre in the #91 Porsche could only be placed third, with the first of the Corvettes just a second off the pace. Also going through to Hyperpole are the Porsches of #72 Hub Auto Racing and #92 Porsche GT.


The #88 Dempsey Proton Racing Porsche driven by Julien Andlauer set the fastest time of 3:48.620 to head the Am class, ahead of the #86 GR Racing Porsche to make it a Porsche 1-2. The Cetilar Racing #47 bounced back from the FP1 incident, with Antonio Fuoco finishing third, just 0.002 seconds behind in his Ferrari.

The #.56 Team Project 1 Porsche driven by Matteo Cairoli had topped the category but his lap of 3m48.905s was deleted for track limits infraction.

The leading Aston Martin was the TF Sport #33, good enough for 6th place.

Text: Steve Tarrant

Photo: Marius Hecker/


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