The final two qualifying sessions ahead of the start of the 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours on Saturday at 15h00 produced some improvements in the times but ultimately the provisional pole position times set in Q1 yesterday were the ones that counted towards the top spots on the grid. The weather even played its part today as the rain that was forecast failed to arrive.
FIA WEC Press Release
Thus the grid for the 83rd edition of the Le Mans 24 Hours will be led by the three Porsche 919s with the no18 car at the head of the field. The three Audi R18s will start the race in 4th, 5th and 6th places, with the no8 Audi R18 e-tron quattro ahead of the no9 and no7 Audis. The two Toyotas will be in 7th and 8th ahead of the two Rebellion Racing R-Ones in 9th and 10th. The three Nissan GT-R LM NISMOs will start in 12th, 13th and 15th overall, improving their times to get closer to the other works team, with the no 4 Bykolles CLM-AER moving into 11th overall.
The first two-hour session of the day saw the no19 Porsche 919 Hybrid of Nick Tandy set the fastest lap of the day with a 3m18.862 lap of the La Sarthe circuit, but it was still two seconds slower than the pole position time of the new qualifying lap record of 3m16.887 set by Porsche Team’s Neel Jani in the no18 919 on Wednesday night.
Once again the fastest times in the session failed to match the pace set on Wednesday evening but there were some improvements. The fastest lap in LMP1 was set by the no7 Audi R18 e-tron quattro in a time of 3m20.967, with the no9 Audi in second just 0.030s behind.
The LMP2 class will be headed by the KCMG Oreca 05-Nissan in 14th overall ahead of the no21 Nissan GT-R. Richard Bradley’s 3m38.032 was 0.9s, and two places, ahead of the no26 G-Drive Racing Ligier of Sam Bird, with the no41 Greaves Motorsport Gibson-Nissan just 0.019 behind the Ligier in 3rd.
The Thiriet by TDS Racing Oreca 05 was the quickest LMP2 car in Q2 with a 3m40.441, which was also two seconds slower than the provisional pole time set by Richard Bradley yesterday in the no47 KCMG ORECA 05, before the red flags were shown to end the session early. The no26 G-Drive Racing Ligier of Sam Bird set a time of 3m38.939, improving the car’s best time by 0.9 seconds and moving them into second place overall in class.
The session was stopped after the no63 Corvette Racing C7R of Jan Magnussen hit the wall on the inside of the Porsche Curves and spun across the track hitting the wall again on the outside. Magnussen, who was conscious when he was extracted from the Corvette, was taken to the medical centre for checks but was later released and returned to the pits to debrief with the team. The car was recovered to the pits as the session was ended 30 minutes early, but has subsequently been withdrawn from the event as the damage was not repairable on site.
Q3 was extended to 2 hours 30 minutes to compensate for the lost time in the earlier session but this was also interrupted by red flags when the no67 Team AAI Porsche 911 caught fire on the Mulsanne Straight.
The only major improvement in the LMGTE times came from the no51 Ferrari of Gianmaria Bruni, the Italian World Champion improving on Wednesday’s time by nearly three tenths, moving up one place on the grid. However the AF Corse Ferrari 458 Italia was still 0.1 seconds behind the no99 Aston Martin Vantage, with Richie Stanaway’s lap claiming the second LMGTE Pro pole position for the British team in the four races of the WEC era at Le Mans.
It was all smiles at Aston Martin as the team also claimed the pole position for the LMGTE Am class with the no98 Vantage taking the top spot thanks to Pedro Lamy’s 3m55.102 lap, 1.6 seconds ahead of the no83 AF Corse Ferrari and 2.1 seconds ahead of the no72 SMP Racing Ferrari 458.
Friday is traditionally a rest day before the big event on Saturday. The teams and drivers will be holding a few PR activities at the circuit before they head into Le Mans for the Drivers Parade which starts at 17h30.
|1||18||LM P1||Porsche Team||Porsche 919 Hybrid||35||3:16.887|
|2||17||LM P1||Porsche Team||Porsche 919 Hybrid||30||3:17.767||+0.880|
|3||19||LM P1||Porsche Team||Porsche 919 Hybrid||25||3:18.862||+1.975|
|4||8||LM P1||Audi Sport Team Joest||Audi R18 e-tron quattro||33||3:19.866||+2.979|
|5||7||LM P1||Audi Sport Team Joest||Audi R18 e-tron quattro||34||3:20.561||+3.674|
|6||9||LM P1||Audi Sport Team Joest||Audi R18 e-tron quattro||35||3:20.997||+4.110|
|7||2||LM P1||Toyota Racing||Toyota TS 040 – Hybrid||29||3:23.543||+6.656|
|8||1||LM P1||Toyota Racing||Toyota TS 040 – Hybrid||30||3:23.767||+6.880|
|9||12||LM P1||Rebellion Racing||Rebellion R-One – AER||15||3:26.874||+9.987|
|10||13||LM P1||Rebellion Racing||Rebellion R-One – AER||26||3:28.930||+12.043|
|11||4||LM P1||Team Bykolles||CLM P1/01 – AER||8||3:36.825||+19.938|
|12||22||LM P1||Nissan Motorsports||Nissan GT-R LM Nismo||17||3:36.995||+20.108|
|13||23||LM P1||Nissan Motorsports||Nissan GT-R LM Nismo||20||3:37.291||+20.404|
|14||47||LM P2||KCMG||Oreca 05 – Nissan||13||3:38.032||+21.145|
|15||21||LM P1||Nissan Motorsports||Nissan GT-R LM Nismo||26||3:38.691||+21.804|
|16||26||LM P2||G-Drive Racing||Ligier JS P2 – Nissan||23||3:38.939||+22.052|
|17||41||LM P2||Greaves Motorsport||Gibson 015S – Nissan||30||3:38.958||+22.071|
|18||38||LM P2||JOTA Sport||Gibson 015S – Nissan||25||3:39.004||+22.117|
|19||36||LM P2||Signatech Alpine||Alpine A450b – Nissan||32||3:39.699||+22.812|
|20||46||LM P2||Thiriet By Tds Racing||Oreca 05 – Nissan||15||3:39.805||+22.918|
|21||34||LM P2||Oak Racing||Ligier JS P2 – HPD||28||3:40.058||+23.171|
|22||48||LM P2||Murphy Prototypes||Oreca 03R – Nissan||23||3:40.690||+23.803|
|23||28||LM P2||G-Drive Racing||Ligier JS P2 – Nissan||28||3:40.967||+24.080|
|24||43||LM P2||Team Sard Morand||Morgan Evo – SARD||26||3:41.250||+24.363|
|25||29||LM P2||Pegasus Racing||Morgan – Nissan||14||3:42.023||+25.136|
|26||27||LM P2||SMP Racing||BR01 – Nissan||26||3:42.077||+25.190|
|27||42||LM P2||Strakka Racing||Dome S103 – Nissan||27||3:42.237||+25.350|
|28||37||LM P2||SMP Racing||BR01 – Nissan||26||3:42.417||+25.530|
|29||30||LM P2||Extreme Speed Motorsports||Ligier JS P2 – HPD||29||3:42.453||+25.566|
|30||31||LM P2||Extreme Speed Motorsports||Ligier JS P2 – HPD||22||3:44.631||+27.744|
|31||40||LM P2||Krohn Racing||Ligier JS P2 – Judd||24||3:44.854||+27.967|
|32||45||LM P2||Ibanez Racing||Oreca 03R – Nissan||24||3:45.350||+28.463|
|33||35||LM P2||Oak Racing||Ligier JS P2 – Nissan||30||3:52.843||+35.956|
|34||99||LM GTE Pro||Aston Martin Racing V8||Aston Martin Vantage V8||7||3:54.928||+38.041|
|35||51||LM GTE Pro||AF Corse||Ferrari 458 Italia||29||3:55.025||+38.138|
|36||98||LM GTE Am||Aston Martin Racing||Aston Martin Vantage V8||24||3:55.102||+38.215|
|37||97||LM GTE Pro||Aston Martin Racing||Aston Martin Vantage V8||29||3:55.466||+38.579|
|38||71||LM GTE Pro||AF Corse||Ferrari 458 Italia||25||3:55.582||+38.695|
|39||95||LM GTE Pro||Aston Martin Racing||Aston Martin Vantage V8||23||3:55.783||+38.896|
|40||63||LM GTE Pro||Corvette Racing – GM||Chevrolet Corvette C7R||0||3:55.963||+39.076|
|41||91||LM GTE Pro||Porsche Team Manthey||Porsche 911 RSR||24||3:56.618||+39.731|
|42||83||LM GTE Am||AF Corse||Ferrari 458 Italia||29||3:56.723||+39.836|
|43||72||LM GTE Am||SMP Racing||Ferrari 458 Italia||27||3:56.877||+39.990|
|44||92||LM GTE Pro||Porsche Team Manthey||Porsche 911 RSR||29||3:56.922||+40.035|
|45||64||LM GTE Pro||Corvette Racing – GM||Chevrolet Corvette C7R||7||3:57.081||+40.194|
|46||53||LM GTE Am||RILEY MOTORSPORTS-TI AUTO||Srt VIPER GTS-R||22||3:57.836||+40.949|
|47||77||LM GTE Am||Dempsey – Proton Racing||Porsche 911 RSR||28||3:57.842||+40.955|
|48||88||LM GTE Am||Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing||Porsche 911 RSR||13||3:58.259||+41.372|
|49||55||LM GTE Am||AF Corse||Ferrari 458 Italia||21||3:58.433||+41.546|
|50||61||LM GTE Am||AF Corse||Ferrari 458 Italia||26||3:58.695||+41.808|
|51||62||LM GTE Am||Scuderia Corsa||Ferrari 458 Italia||22||3:58.946||+42.059|
|52||50||LM GTE Am||Larbre Competition||Chevrolet Corvette C7R||17||3:59.522||+42.635|
|53||66||LM GTE Am||JMW Motorsport||Ferrari 458 Italia||9||3:59.612||+42.725|
|54||96||LM GTE Am||Aston Martin Racing||Aston Martin Vantage V8||30||4:01.146||+44.259|
|55||68||LM GTE Am||Team AAI||Porsche 911 RSR||25||4:01.243||+44.356|
|56||67||LM GTE Am||Team AAI||Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (997)||17||4:01.270||+44.383|