Magny Cours: Round one first qualifying report

WEATHER Warm and sunny. FIRST QUALIFYING SESSION The 4.250km Magny Cours circuit lent itself to fast times this morning, with two cars breaking into the 1m33s for the first time this weekend. However, the nr 14 Lister Storm was the fastest car...

WEATHER Warm and sunny.

The 4.250km Magny Cours circuit lent itself to fast times this morning, with two cars breaking into the 1m33s for the first time this weekend. However, the nr 14 Lister Storm was the fastest car on the track, nearly seven-tenths of a second ahead of its nearest rival. Two Lister Storms, three Chrysler Viper GTS-Rs and one Ferrari 550 Maranello go through to the GT Super Pole session, while in N-GT three Porsches and three Ferraris will take part in the Superpole session.

The British Lister Storm team claimed provisional GT pole position as the 2000 champion, Jamie Campbell-Walter, set a time of 1:33.237 to beat off a challenge from the Larbre Competition--Chereau Chrysler Viper GTS-R of Christophe Bouchut and David Terrien. Bouchut claimed second on the grid with a 1:33.921, more than half a second down on the leading Lister. Christophe Bouchut was more happy with his Larbre Competition Chrysler Viper this morning after a lot of changes were made to the set-up last night. The Carsport Holland Racing team, which had set times close to those of the Lister Storm during Friday's free practice session, did not set a time a brake disc exploded on the nr 3 Chrysler Viper GTS-R during Mike Hezeman's out-lap. The explosion destroyed the front right corner of the Chrysler Viper GTS-R, including the floor and the radiator. Fabio Babini set third fastest time in the Paul Belmondo Chrysler Viper, the Italian setting a 1:34.574 while Philippe Alliot continued to be the fastest Ferrari, setting the fourth time in the Force One Racing Ferrari 550 Maranello. Vincent Vosse was fifth fastest in the second Larbre Competition Chrysler Viper GTS-R, while the second Lister Storm of Bobby Verdon-Roe and Paul Knapfield was sixth, Verdon-Roe claiming the final place for the Super Pole session despite being held up in traffic.

The Freisinger Porsche 996 GT3-R of Ni Amorim and Stephane Ortelli set the pace in N-GT qualifying, beating the three Ferrari 360 Modenas of the JMB Ferrari team. Ortelli set the time, a 1:39.552 to beat Christian Pescatori's Ferrari.

Andrea Garbagnati and Andrea Bertolini were third fastest in the JMB Ferrari, while Batti Pregliasco, Peter Kutemann and Iradj Alexander were fourth in class, 16th overall. Philipp Peter qualified the Autorlando Sport Porsche 996 GT3-R fifth despite missing the free practice yesterday, while Jurgen von Gartzen claimed the final Super Pole position in the JVG Racing Porsche 996GT3-R, setting a time of 1:41.436


10:30 Green Light -- the nr 14 and 15 Lister Storms are the first on the track
10:39 nr 12 Belmondo Viper is quickest on the track with Babini at the wheel; Philipp Peter leads N-GT in the Autorlando Porsche 996 GT3-R
10:40 GT : 12 -- 14 - 11 -- 9 -- 16 - 24 NGT : 58 -- 51 --63 --63 -- 64 -- 52
10:42 Lister nr 14 takes provisional pole with a time of 1:33.237
10:44 nr 50 JMB Racing Ferrari 360 Modena takes the N-GT lead
10:45 Bouchut and Terrien into second place with the nr 1 Larbre Chrysler Viper GTS-R
10:45 Damage to the right side of the nr 3 Carsport Holland Chrysler Viper GTS-R after a wheel broke; returns to the pit lane
10:47 nr 1 Chrysler Viper in the gravel in the Grande Courbe
10:50 GT : 14 -- 1 -- 12 -- 5- 2 -- 15 N-GT : 54 -- 50 -- 51 -- 53 -- 58 -- 60
10:53 nr 1 Chrysler Viper rejoins the track; returns slowly to the pit lane
11:00 GT : 14 -- 1 -- 12 -- 5 -- 2 -- 15 -- 23 N-GT : 54 -- 50 -- 51 -- 53 --58 -- 60
11:03 Spin for the nr 52 JMB Competition Ferrari 360 Modena of Pietro Gianni and Gianluca Giraudi; the car is in the gravel.
11:10 GT : 14 -- 1 --12 -- 5 -- 2 -- 15 N-GT : 54 -- 50 -- 51 - 53 -- 58 -- 60
11:13 Collision between the nr 62 Cirtek Porsche (Sanguiolo / Fertl) and the nr 5 Force One Ferrari 550 Maranello (Alliot/Hallyday)
11:15 Chequered flag - GT : 14 -- 1 -- 12 -- 5 -- 2 -- 15 -- 23 --4 -- 22 -- 22 -- 11 -- 7 - 9 N-GT : 54 -- 50 -- 51 -- 53 -- 58 -- 60 --55 -- 77

GT cars qualified for the Superpole: nr 14 Lister Storm, nr 1 Larbre Chrysler Viper GTS-R, nr 12 Paul Belmondo Chrysler Viper GTS-R, nr 5 Force One Ferrari 550 Maranello, nr 2 Larbre Competition Chereau Viper and nr 15 Lister Storm

N-GT cars qualified for Superpole : nr 54 Freisinger Porsche 996 GT3-R, nr 50 JMB Racing Ferrari 360 Modena, nr 51 JMB Racing Ferrari 360 Modena, nr 53 JMB Competition Ferrari 360 Modena, nr 58 Autorlando Porsche 996 GT3-R, nr 60 JVG Racing Porsche 996 GT3-R

Notes and Quotes
Christophe Bouchut [Larbre Competition -- Chereau, nr 1 Chrysler Viper GTS-R], "The balance is good now, and I am more optimistic. I think we can beat the Lister Storms this weekend."

Mike Hezemans [Team Carsport Holland, nr 3 Chrysler Viper GTS-R] -- after his brake disc exploded on his first lap in the car during qualifying "Why couldn't that have happened two laps later? I could have been in the Super Pole!"

Luca Cappellari [Team Carsport Holland, nr 4 Chrysler Viper GTS-R], "We had a few problems yesterday so we missed much of the free practice session. Today, we spent the time setting the car up. There was a lot of traffic at the end of the session. However, I think we have got a good car for the race. This is the first time my team-mate Fabrizio Gollin has raced in a GT car, and he has not been able to do many laps. But he is an experienced Formula 3000 driver, and I am sure that within two or three races we will be OK."

Luca Riccitelli [RWS Motorsport, nr 7 Porsche 996 GT]: "My first lap was a 1m37s and I was going for another one which felt faster in the car but I went onto the grass. When you are on the limit it is easy to make a mistake. It is not so bad, I can get on with my race tomorrow."

Jamie Campbell-Walter, [Lister Storm Racing, nr 14 Lister Storm]: "It was a great lap. The Dunlop tyres worked very well with the car and there was no traffic. I don't know whether we could have broken into the 1m32s, but I doubt it."

Christian Pescatori [JMB Racing, nr 50 Ferrari 360 Modena]: "We are working on a race set-up because we do not have the new engine. The new engine has more power between 4000rpm and 8000rpm and we hope to have that either at Silverstone or at the Le Mans trials."

Stephane Ortelli [Freisinger Motorsport, nr 54 Porsche 996 GT3-R, ]: "I don't think the Ferraris are showing everything that they can do. Their handling is better, the power is better, and I think this will be a tough season for us."


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About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Fabrizio Gollin , Christian Pescatori , Ni Amorim , Vincent Vosse , Stéphane Ortelli , Philippe Alliot , Jamie Campbell-Walter , Mike Hezemans , Luca Riccitelli , Christophe Bouchut , David Terrien , Paul Belmondo , Andrea Garbagnati , Fabio Babini , Peter Kutemann , Andrea Bertolini , Iradj Alexander-David , Bobby Verdon-Roe , Luca Cappellari , Batti Pregliasco , Jurgen von Gartzen , Philipp Peter , Gianluca Giraudi
Teams Larbre Competition