BRUNI PUTS RISI FERRARI ON PROVISIONAL GT2 POLE Series teams 1-2-3 in class at Le Mans; weather questionable for Thursday Risi Competizione's quest for a third straight victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans is off to a good - albeit early - start.
BRUNI PUTS RISI FERRARI ON PROVISIONAL GT2 POLE
Series teams 1-2-3 in class at Le Mans; weather questionable for Thursday
Risi Competizione's quest for a third straight victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans is off to a good - albeit early - start. Gianmaria Bruni set the provisional pole position time for GT2 with a lap of 3:59.361 in the Ferrari F430 GT that he will share with Jaime Melo and Pierre Kaffer.
Bruni's time was 30th quickest overall in the 56-car field. Risi is on a remarkable run in the world's greatest motor race having won GT2 in 2008 and 2009. Bruni was part of the 2008 squad with Melo and Mika Salo. Given the moderate chance of rain for Thursday's two qualifying sessions, the times Wednesday may well set the grid for this weekend's race.
Entries from the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón were 1- 2-3 in the class. Bruni's Ferrari was a scant 0.864 seconds ahead of Corvette Racing's Jan Magnussen and the Corvette C6.R he will drive with Antonio Garcia and Johnny O'Connell. The gap must seem smaller than that considering the Le Mans circuit is an 8.4-mile lap.
The second factory Corvette of Olivier Beretta, Oliver Gavin and Emmanuel Collard was third fastest in class with Gavin the quickest of the trio at 4:01.012. This is the first Le Mans for Corvette in GT2.
Highcroft Racing's HPD ARX-01c sat second in LMP2 after a lap of 3:37.202 for the car of David Brabham, Marino Franchitti and Marco Werner. The entry, leading the American Le Mans Series' LMP championship after two victories in three rounds, was only 1.034 seconds off the pace of Strakka Racing's HPD prototype.
This is the first entry at Le Mans for the Highcroft team owned by Duncan Dayton.
At the head of the grid, the three factory Peugeot 908 HDi FAP diesel prototypes were fastest led by Sebastien Bourdais' lap of 3:19.711. He is driving with Pedro Lamy and Simon Pagenaud, who drives with Brabham in the Highcroft LMP entry in the American Le Mans Series. Bourdais was just 0.606 seconds clear of the second-place Peugeot of Alexander Wurz, Marc Gene and Anthony Davidson. The trio won the season-opening Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Fresh from Florida.
The quickest of the new Audi R15 Plus diesels was the car of Mike Rockenfeller and former Series LMP2 champions Timo Bernhard and Romain Dumas. Their car was 3.867 seconds behind Bourdais.
The final qualifying sessions are set for 7 p.m. local time (1 p.m. Eastern) on Thursday.