The #7 Toyota crew took pole in the FIA World Endurance Championship’s 6 Hours of Fuji race beating the sister #8 car by 0.091s on average time.
The combined time set by Jose Maria Lopez and Kamui Kobayashi (along with Mike Conway) in the #7 Toyota of 1m23.557s was enough to beat the time of 1m23.648s set by Fernando Alonso and Sebastien Buemi (along with Kazuki Nakajima) at Fuji.
Alonso’s time had given the #8 provisional pole but Buemi’s quick lap was deleted due to track limits which allowed the #7 crew to take the top spot. Behind them, it was the #1 Rebellion Racing of Bruno Senna, Neel Jani and Andre Lotterer.
Their best time was also deleted but they managed to still clock a combined time of 1m24.359s to beat the sister #3 car of Thomas Laurent, Gustavo Menezes and Mathias Beche (1m24.533s).
The #3 crew were hampered by a spin for Laurent which brought out the yellow flags midway in qualifying. The two Rebellions had the upperhand on the other privateer cars with #17 SMP Racing finishing fifth.
The crew of Stephane Sarrazin, Egor Orudzhev and Matevos Isaakyan clocked a 1m24.744s to beat its sister #11 crew of Jenson Button, Vitaly Petrov and Mikhail Aleshin who clocked a 1m25.146s lap time in sixth.
The LMP1 class was completed by the #10 DragonSpeed crew of James Allen and Ben Hanley (1m26.713s) and #4 ByKolles Racing Team’s Oliver Webb, Tom Dillmann and James Rossiter (1m26.713s).
In the LMP2 class, it was the #31 DragonSpeed Oreca’s Pastor Maldonado, Anthony Davidson and Roberto Gonzalez taking pole with a time of 1m28.906s beating the #37 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca of Jazeman Jaafar, Weiron Tan and Nabil Jeffri.
The set a 1m29.203s to lead the sister #38 car of Ho-Pin Tung, Gabriel Aubry and Stephane Richelmi as the #36 Signatech Alpine ended up fourth from #28 TDS Racing Oreca, #29 Racing Team Nederland Dallara and #50 Larbre Competition Ligier.
LMGTE Pro and LMGTE Am
The GT class action saw the #95 Aston Martin Racing crew of Marco Sorensen and Nicki Thiim (1m36.093s) on pole in LMGTE Pro from #82 BMW Team MTEK’s Antonio Felix da Costa and Tom Blomqvist (1m36.275s).
Third went to #97 Aston Martin of Alex Lynn and Maxime Martin (1m36.362s) with #67 Ford Chip Ganassi of Harry Tincknell and Andy Priaulx in fourth and #71 AF Corse Ferrari of Sam Bird and Davide Rigon completing the Top 5.
The LMGTE Am class pole went to #88 Dempsey Proton Racing Porsche of Matteo Cairoli, Giorgio Roda and Satoshi Hoshino (1m38.336s) from #98 Aston Martin Racing (1m38.400s) and #77 Dempsey Proton Racing (1m38.524s).
UPDATE: The #7 Toyota has lost pole as Lopez was found to be speeding in the pitlane by a massive 8.7 km/hr margin to the set 60 km/hr limit. As a result, they will start from the back of the field, elevating #8 Toyota to pole.
This also helped the #1 Rebellion Racing to a front-row start with #3 Rebellion Racing in third alongside the #17 SMP Racing in row two.
UPDATE 2: Following the initial decision, the stewards decided that the #7 Toyota will not start from the back of the field but in eighth position – which is at the back of the LMP1 class.