Ferrari end up 1-2 with #50 taking FIA WEC pole in 2023 Le Mans 24 Hours in Hyperpole, with #8 Toyota rounding the Top 3.
Antonio Fuoco went fastest in Thursday’s Hyperpole session, setting an impressive 3:22.982s lap to secure pole position for the centenary 24 Hours of Le Mans. His stablemate Alessandro Pier Guidi gave Ferrari AF Corse 1-2 in the session, on what is the “Prancing Horse’s” return to Le Mans in the top class.
#3 Cadillac Racing V Series.R driven by local ace Sebastien Bourdais initially placed third, but then immediately pulled off on Mulsanne Straight due to a technical failure followed by a minor fire.
The session was red-flagged and, as a result, the clock stopped with little over five minutes remaining, thus creating what essentially was a one-lap shootout and adding extra excitement. Bourdais eventually lost his third place for causing the red flag and dropped down to fifth place.
#8 Toyota Gazoo Racing GR010 placed third after a last-gasp effort by Brendon Hartley. A rapid late lap from Felipe Nasr allowed the Brazilian to split the two Toyotas and complete the second row of the grid in his #75 Penske Porsche Motorsport-run Porsche 963.
- Ferrari AF Corse locks out the front-row of the grid on the Prancing Horse’s return to Le Mans in the top category after sensational Hyperpole session this evening.
- Antonio Fuoco in No.50 Ferrari 499P sets the best time at an astonishing 3m22.982s
- That time beats his stablemate Alessandro Pier Guidi in the No.51 Ferrari AF Corse 499P machine in what is Ferrari’s first overall Le Mans pole since 1973!
- No.3 Cadillac Racing V Series.R driven by Sebastien Bourdais had taken third placed time initially on a 3m24.908s. But then immediately pulls off on Mulsanne Straight with a technical failure and a small fire which is quickly extinguished.
- The session is red flagged as a consequence and the clock is stopped to add extra drama to the session as it becomes a final lap shoot-out.
- But times stand and Bourdais loses third place for causing red flag and drops to fifth place.
- No.8 Toyota Gazoo Racing GR010 places third after last gasp effort by Brendon Hartley.
- The rest of the Hypercar field lines up as – No.75 Penske Porsche (4th), No.7 Toyota (5th); No.2 Cadillac (6th); No.5 Porsche Penske (7th) No.3 Cadillac (8th)
Paul Loup-Chatin claimed pole position for IDEC Sport owing to a pace-setting 3m32.923s lap, in what was the outfit’s second pole Le Mans pole after its 2018 qualifying triumph. Pietro Fittipaldi yet again showed rapid pace but just misses out on the pole with his final lap effort being only 0.1122s off the top spot. #41 Team WRT rounded out the top three with Louis Deletraz behind the wheel of the Belgian team’s Oreca.
- Paul Loup-Chatin claims pole position for IDEC Sport by setting a pace setting 3m32.923s.
- IDEC’s second pole in WEC alongside Le Mans 2018
- Pietro Fittipaldi again stars the LMP2 but just misses out on pole with final lap effort by a mother 0.1122s
- No.41 Team WRT is third as Louis Deletraz sets time for Belgian team that won in 2021.
- The rest of the LMP2 field lines up as – No.47 Cool Racing (4th); No.63 Prema (5th), Nielsen Racing (6th), Jota (5th), No.9 Prema (7th), Vector Sport (8th)
LMGTE Am –
In the LMGTE AM class Ben Keating in the #33 points-leading Corvette Racing entry took the LMGTE Am pole position to extend his points lead. It was Corvette’s third pole at Le Mans since FIA WEC’s inauguration, and second in the GTE Am class. Keating’s best lap was 3m52.376s, 1.2s ahead of Ahmed Al Harthy in ORT by TF Sport by Aston Martin Gap. Thomas Flohr in the #54 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE Evo went third-fastest to ensure three different manufacturers starting from the top three positions.
- Ben Keating in No.33 points leading Corvette Racing entry takes LMGTE Am pole position and extends WEC points lead.
- Corvette’s 3rd pole at Le Mans in WEC, and second in GTE Am after Larbre in 2017.
- Keating sets best lap of 3m52.376s to head Ahmed Al Harthy in ORT by TF Sport by Aston Martin which takes second position on grid. Gap between them is 1.2s.
- Thomas Flohr in the No.54 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE Evo grabs third position on grid to ensure three different manufacturers in top three.
- The rest of the LMGTE Am field lines up as – No.21 AF Corse (4th), No.83 Richard Mille AF Corse (5th), No.57 Kessel Racing (6th), GMB Aston Martin (7th) , No.74 Kessel Racing (8th)
Here’s WEC Le Mans 24 Hours results: http://fiawec.alkamelsystems.com/
[Note: The story is as per press release]