Shanghai WEC: Porsche claims another front row lockout

Porsche scored another 1-2 in qualifying to maintain its 100 percent pole record in the 2015 WEC as Mark Webber, Brendon Hartley and Timo Bernhard stretched their title lead to two points.

The championship-leading #17 Porsche 919 Hybrid, driven by Webber and Hartley in qualifying, set an average time of 1m42.719s.

Hartley, who has been the quickest driver in the #17 so far this weekend fired in an ultimate best of 1m42.621s to lay the foundations for his and his teammate's fourth pole position of the season so far.

Such was the advantage that the #17 Porsche enjoyed that Webber was able to call it a day with five minutes to go.

The #17 Porsche had 0.769s in hand over the sister #18 car, which made an unexpected pit stop after the first lap out of the pit. Marc Lieb and Romain Dumas were on qualifying duties this afternoon.

Audi was unable to get anywhere near the Porches at Shanghai and will thus line-up third and fourth. Marcel Fassler was baulked on one of his quick laps, but Audi struggled to get within a second of their German rivals this afternoon.

The #7 Audi R18 e-tron quattro, in the hands of Fassler and Benoit Treluyer, starts fourth, behind the sister car driven by Loic Duval and Lucas di Grassi.

Toyota finished in its now customary fifth and sixth places. Sebastien Buemi and Anthony Davidson qualified the #1 TS 040 Hybrid ahead of their sister car, which had Alex Wurz and Mike Conway on duty this afternoon.

G-Drive takes LMP2 pole

LMP2 pole was claimed for a third successive race by Sam Bird and Julien Canal in the #26 G-Drive Ligier-Nissan. Canal fought back superbly from an accident in the final Free Practice session this morning, while Bird set easily the fastest individual class lap on a 1m51.984s.

The G-Drive Racing Ligier was almost six tenths of a second quicker than the KCMG ORECA 05-Nissan. The two title rivals will start from the front row just three weeks after a series of controversial incidents at Fuji. 

Matt Howson and Nick Tandy qualified the car for the Hong-Kong-entered team as they attempt to hunt down a now 13-point deficit to the G-Drive trio.

Ferrari and Aston share LMGTE poles

Gianmaria Bruni and Toni Vilander took the LMGTE Pro class pole position and, in so doing, secured the extra to point close further on their title rivals.

First Vilander and then Bruni qualified their Ferrari 458 Italia to set a combined average of 2m02.243s. Bruni set the overall fastest lap with a scorching 2m01.987s.

Davide Rigon and James Calado ensured the Prancing Horse locked out the front row as they placed second in the #71 car.

Third in LMGTE Pro was the #99 Aston Martin V8 Vantage with Alex MacDowell and Fernando Rees on qualifying duties.

Porsche Team Manthey ultimately didn’t have the pace of the Ferraris in Shanghai and the pair of 911 RSR’s qualified fourth and fifth, with the Patrick Pilet/Frederic Makowiecki car just pipping Michael Christensen/Richard Lietz.

The team elected to save fresh rubber for the race tomorrow, a strategy which it has employed at several rounds so far this season.

LMGTE Am saw Aston Martin locking out the front row, but it took a last minute wonder lap by bronze driver Paul Dalla Lana to ensure a fourth pole of the season.

The Canadian turned in a last lap 2m03.484s lap which meant that, combined with Pedro Lamy’s earlier effort, it resulted in an average of 2m04.725s. This was just a fraction faster than fellow Aston runners Liam Griffin and Stuart Hall in the #96 Vantage V8.

Qualifying results:

1 Mark Webber
Brendon Hartley
Timo Bernhard
Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid 1:42.719
2 Marc Lieb
Romain Dumas
Neel Jani
Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid 1:43.488
3 Loic Duval
Oliver Jarvis
Lucas di Grassi
Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro '15 1:44.200
4 Andre Lotterer
Benoit Tréluyer
Marcel Fassler
Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro '15 1:44.645
5 Anthony Davidson
Kazuki Nakajima
Sébastien Buemi
Toyota Racing Toyota TS040 Hybrid 1:45.776
6 Alexander Wurz
Mike Conway
Stéphane Sarrazin
Toyota Racing Toyota TS040 Hybrid 1:45.962
7 Alexandre Imperatori
 Matheo Tuscher
Dominik Kraihamer
Rebellion Racing Rebellion R-One 1:49.418
8 Mathias Beche
Nicolas Prost
Rebellion Racing Rebellion R-One 1:50.942
9 Pierre Kaffer
Simon Trummer
Team ByKolles CLM P1/01 1:52.069
10 Roman Rusinov
Sam Bird
Julien Canal
G-Drive Racing Ligier JS P2 1:52.763
11 Matthew Howson
Nick Tandy
Richard Bradley
KCMG ORECA 05 1:53.345
12 Pipo Derani
Gustavo Yacaman
Ricardo Gonzalez
G-Drive Racing Ligier JS P2 1:53.390
13 Oliver Webb
Chris Cumming
Pierre Ragues
Team SARD Morand Morgan LMP2 Evo '15 1:53.600
14 Nelson Panciatici
Paul-Loup Chatin
 Tom Dillmann
Signatech Alpine Alpine A450b 1:53.747
15 David Heinemeier Hansson
Ryan Dalziel
Scott Sharp
Extreme Speed Motorsports Ligier JS P2 1:54.775
16 Jonny Kane
Nick Leventis
Danny Watts
Strakka Racing Gibson 015S 1:55.205
17 Alex Brundle
Ho-Pin Tung
David Cheng
Pegasus Racing Morgan LMP2 1:56.624
18 Ed Brown
Jon Fogarty
Johannes van Overbeek
Extreme Speed Motorsports Ligier JS P2 1:57.432
19 Toni Vilander
Gianmaria Bruni
AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italia 2:02.243
20 Davide Rigon
James Calado
AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italia 2:02.508
21 Alex MacDowall
Richie Stanaway
Fernando Rees
Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8 2:02.540
22 Frédéric Makowiecki
Patrick Pilet
Porsche Team Manthey Porsche 911 RSR 2:03.048
23 Richard Lietz
Michael Christensen
Porsche Team Manthey Porsche 911 RSR 2:03.352
24 Jonathan Adam
Darren Turner
Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8 2:03.393
25 Pedro Lamy
Paul Dalla Lana
Mathias Lauda
Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8 2:04.728
26  Liam Griffin
Francesco Castellacci
Stuart Hall
Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8 2:04.858
27 Gianluca Roda
Paolo Ruberti
 Nicolai Sylvest
Larbre Compétition Chevrolet Corvette C7.R 2:04.874
28 Emmanuel Collard
Rui Aguas
François Perrodo
AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italia 2:05.455
29  Aleksey Basov
Andrea Bertolini
Viktor Shaitar
SMP Racing Ferrari F458 Italia 2:05.556
30 Patrick Long
Patrick Dempsey
Marco Seefried
Dempsey Racing - Proton Porsche 911 RSR 2:06.196
31 Khaled Al Qubaisi
Christian Ried
Klaus Bachler
Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR 2:11.851


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About this article
Series WEC
Event Shanghai
Track Shanghai International Circuit
Drivers Mark Webber , Gianmaria Bruni , Pedro Lamy , Timo Bernhard , Julien Canal , Sam Bird , Toni Vilander , Brendon Hartley , Paul Dalla Lana
Teams Porsche Team , G-Drive Racing , AF Corse , Aston Martin Racing
Article type Qualifying report