Spa WEC: Toyota edges out Porsche in first practice

Toyota narrowly edged out LMP1 rival Porsche in the first practice session for this weekend's WEC 6 Hours of Spa, as Mike Conway set the quickest time on Thursday morning.

Spa WEC: Toyota edges out Porsche in first practice

Conway led the way with a 1m57.940s set early in the 90-minute session aboard the #7 Toyota TS050 Hybrid, which is missing the injured Jose Maria Lopez from its line-up this weekend.

That was nine tenths up on the best of the Porsche 919 Hybrids until the closing minutes, when Brendon Hartley posted a 1m57.976s to close the gap between the two LMP1 manufacturers to just 0.036s. 

The #1 Porsche took third spot on a 1m58.869s set by Neel Jani at the beginning of the 90 minutes. 

The second of the Toyotas, the Silverstone-winning #8 car, was just behind on a 1m58.914s from Sebastien Buemi. 

Toyota's regular WEC entries are running in high-downforce configuration, while the Porsches are again in the low-downforce Le Mans 24 Hours set-up in which they raced at Silverstone last month. 

The third Toyota, running in Le Mans spec, was fifth fastest in Stephane Sarrazin's hands on a 1m59.633s.

The Signatech Alpine squad ended up fastest in LMP2 courtesy of a 2m04.171s from Gustavo Menezes aboard its #36 Oreca-Gibson 07. 

That put the American just under a tenth up on Alex Lynn's 2m04.262s in the #26 G-Drive Racing Oreca.

Manor driver Simon Trummer was in turn even a smaller margin behind in third, with a 2m04.301s. 

Ford just had the measure of Porsche in GTE Pro. 

Andy Priaulx was fastest aboard the #67 Ganassi-run Ford GT on a 2m16.802s, which compared with Frederic Makowiecki's 2m16.924s in the #91 Porsche 911 RSR.

The sister #66 Ford was third-fastest, ahead of the #92 Porsche and the two AF Corse-run Ferraris.

Matteo Cairoli was quickest in GTE Am for the Dempsey-Proton Porsche squad on a best of 2m18.089s.

Practice results:

Pos.#DriversCarClassTimeGap
1 7 japan Kamui Kobayashi 
united_kingdom Mike Conway 
Toyota TS050 Hybrid LMP1 1'57.940  
2 2 germany Timo Bernhard 
new_zealand Brendon Hartley 
new_zealand Earl Bamber 
Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 1'57.976 0.036
3 1 germany Andre Lotterer 
switzerland Neel Jani 
united_kingdom Nick Tandy 
Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 1'58.869 0.929
4 8 united_kingdom Anthony Davidson 
japan Kazuki Nakajima 
switzerland Sébastien Buemi 
Toyota TS050 Hybrid LMP1 1'58.914 0.974
5 9 france Stéphane Sarrazin 
france Nicolas Lapierre 
japan Yuji Kunimoto 
Toyota TS050 Hybrid LMP1 1'59.633 1.693
6 36 france Romain Dumas 
united_states Gustavo Menezes 
united_kingdom Matt Rao 
Alpine A470 LMP2 2'04.171 6.231
7 26 russia Roman Rusinov 
france  Pierre Thiriet 
united_kingdom Alex Lynn 
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'04.262 6.322
8 25 russia Vitaly Petrov 
switzerland Simon Trummer 
mexico Roberto Gonzalez 
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'04.301 6.361
9 31 brazil Bruno Senna 
france Julien Canal 
france Nicolas Prost 
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'04.485 6.545
10 37 china David Cheng 
france Tristan Gommendy 
united_kingdom Alex Brundle 
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'04.748 6.808
11 24 france Jean-Eric Vergne 
switzerland Jonathan Hirschi 
thailand Tor Graves 
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.302 7.362
12 13 brazil Nelson Piquet Jr. 
denmark David Heinemeier Hansson 
switzerland Mathias Beche 
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.344 7.404
13 38 united_kingdom Oliver Jarvis 
china Ho-Pin Tung 
france Thomas Laurent 
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'05.562 7.622
14 35 france Nelson Panciatici 
france Pierre Ragues 
brazil Andre Negrao 
Alpine A470 LMP2 2'06.271 8.331
15 34 india Karun Chandhok 
united_kingdom Nigel Moore 
united_kingdom  Philip Hanson 
Ligier JSP 217 LMP2 2'06.607 8.667
16 4 united_kingdom Oliver Webb 
austria Dominik Kraihamer 
united_kingdom James Rossiter 
ENSO CLM P1/01 LMP1 2'07.060 9.120
17 28 france François Perrodo 
france Emmanuel Collard 
france Matthieu Vaxivière 
Oreca 07 LMP2 2'11.328 13.388
18 67 brazil Pipo Derani 
united_kingdom Harry Tincknell 
united_kingdom Andy Priaulx 
Ford GT LMGTE PRO 2'16.802 18.862
19 91 austria Richard Lietz 
france Frédéric Makowiecki 
Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE PRO 2'16.924 18.984
20 66 germany Stefan Mücke 
france Olivier Pla 
united_states Billy Johnson 
Ford GT LMGTE PRO 2'17.201 19.261
21 92 denmark Michael Christensen 
france Kevin Estre 
Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE PRO 2'17.314 19.374
22 71 united_kingdom Sam Bird 
italy Davide Rigon 
Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE PRO 2'17.768 19.828
23 51 united_kingdom James Calado 
italy Alessandro Pier Guidi 
Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE PRO 2'17.797 19.857
24 95 denmark Marco Sorensen 
denmark Nicki Thiim 
new_zealand Richie Stanaway 
Aston Martin Vantage LMGTE PRO 2'17.957 20.017
25 77 germany Christian Ried 
italy Matteo Cairoli 
germany Marvin Dienst 
Porsche 911 RSR (991) LMGTE AM 2'18.089 20.149
26 97 united_kingdom Darren Turner 
united_kingdom Jonathan Adam 
brazil Daniel Serra 
Aston Martin Vantage LMGTE PRO 2'18.542 20.602
27 86 united_kingdom Michael Wainwright 
united_kingdom Ben Barker 
australia Nick Foster Jr. 
Porsche 911 RSR (991) LMGTE AM 2'18.730 20.790
28 61 ireland Matt Griffin 
singapore Mok Weng Sun 
japan Keita Sawa 
Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE AM 2'18.876 20.936
29 98 portugal Pedro Lamy 
canada Paul Dalla Lana 
austria Mathias Lauda 
Aston Martin Vantage LMGTE AM 2'19.274 21.334
30 54 italy Francesco Castellacci 
spain Miguel Molina 
switzerland Thomas Flohr 
Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE AM 2'20.242 22.302
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