The question has to be asked, have Audi been sandbagging during practice or did the rack conditions favour their diesel powered LMP1 challengers? As today’s qualifying session closed the #7 R18 or Marcel Fassler took overall honours with a time of 1:53.204 to take tomorrow’s pole position.
The sister car of Lucas DiGrassi was just 0.104s behind clocking in with 1:53.308 to take second on the grid and Porsche’s Brendan Hartley rounded out the top three in the #1 car with a 1:54.150.
The fastest Toyota was the #6 in the hands of Stefan Sarazin somewhat off the pace at 1:58.200. ByKolles took the LMP1 Privateer top spot clocking in with a 2:08.332.
In LMP2 honours went to the #26 G-Drive Oreca of Roman Rusinov, Nathaniel Berthon & René Rast with an aggregate time of 2:08.479. The #31 ESM took the second spot clocking in with 2:09.632 and RGR Sport by Morand rounded out the top three LMP2 challengers 0.663s behind (2:10.295).
Moving to GTE, Bird and Rigon put their #71 AF Corse Ferrari 488 on pole and 15th place overall with a 2:12.440, 1.4s ahead of the #77 Dempsey Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR ((2:13.822). Third in class for tomorrow’s start was the #66 Ford GT of Mucke, Pla & Johnson (2:14.475).
In GTE Am it was a Porsche front row lockout with the #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing Porsche taking the top step setting an aggregate time of 2:14.639 and the #78 KCMG Porsche 911 RSR in second with 2:15.510. Larbre Competition’s C7R Corvette rounded out the top three with a 2:14.044.