Toyota takes Shanghai WEC pole

Toyota takes Shanghai WEC pole

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Toyota takes Shanghai WEC pole

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Toyota claimed only its second pole position of this year’s World Endurance Championship at Shanghai.

Alex Wurz and Nicolas Lapierre followed up on their pole at the Silverstone season opener by setting a four-lap average of 1m48.013s aboard their Toyota TS030 Hybrid to edge out Audi drivers Marcel Fassler and Benoit Treluyer by just 0.089 second.

The Toyota duo had a couple of tenths in hand before Treluyer went out again at the end of the 20-minute session and improved the Audi R18 e-tron quattro’s average to close to within a tenth.

“Last year, this was our most competitive track and this year it looks good as well,” Lapierre said. “It’s looking better than ever before this season with two competitive cars, but we have to be careful. Benoit did a very good lap at the end.”

The second Toyota, shared in qualifying by Stephane Sarrazin and Sebastien Buemi, was third, a further six tenths down on the Audi with a 1m48.694s average. The championship-leading Audi, qualified by Allan McNish and Tom Kristensen, ended up more than a second behind its sister car in fourth place.

G-Drive/Delta-ADR drivers John Martin and Mike Conway dominated LMP2 aboard their ORECA-Nissan 03 to claim class pole by nearly eight tenths ahead of the best of the OAK Racing Morgan-Nissans shared by Olivier Pla and Alex Brundle.

Aston Martin Racing took pole position in both GTE classes. Darren Turner put in two laps in the Aston Martin Vantage GTE he shares with Stefan Mucke to leapfrog over the sister car qualified by Bruno Senna and Richie Stanaway to jump to the top of the times in the Pro division by just 0.019sec.

Christoffer Nygaard and Nicki Thiim won the Am class pole by just 0.015sec from the AF Corse Ferrari 458 Italia shared by Marco Cioci and Matt Griffin.

Pos  Cl     Drivers                         Team/Car                Time        Gap 1.  P1     Wurz/Lapierre                   Toyota                  1m48.013s 2.  P1     Lotterer/Treluyer/Fassler       Audi                    1m48.102s  +0.089s 3.  P1     Davidson/Buemi/Sarrazin         Toyota                  1m48.694s  +0.681s 4.  P1     Kristensen/Duval/McNish         Audi                    1m49.173s  +1.160s 5.  P1     Belicchi/Beche/Prost            Rebellion Lola-Toyota   1m51.204s  +3.191s 6.  P2     Rusinov/Martin/Conway           Delta-ADR ORECA-Nissan  1m55.423s 7.  P2     Pla/Heinemeier Hansson/Brundle  OAK Morgan-Nissan       1m56.210s  +0.787s 8.  P2     Shulzhitckiy/Lux/Wirdheim       Greaves Zytek-Nissan    1m56.219s  +0.796s 9.  P2     Baguette/Gonzalez/Plowman       OAK Morgan-Nissan       1m56.243s  +0.820s10.  P2     Graves/Kerr/Dolby               Delta-ADR ORECA-Nissan  1m56.284s  +0.861s11.  P2     Perez Companc/Minassian/Kaffer  Pecom ORECA-Nissan      1m56.971s  +1.548s12.  P2     Weeda/Liuzzi/Bouchut            Lotus                   1m57.531s  +2.108s13.  P2     Holzer/Kraihamer/Charouz        Lotus                   1m57.639s  +2.216s14.  P2     Nicolet/Ihara/Cheng             OAK Morgan-Nissan       1m59.063s  +3.640s15.  GTE P  Turner/Mucke                    Aston Martin            2m04.370s16.  GTE P  Lamy/Senna/Stanaway             Aston Martin            2m04.389s  +0.019s17.  GTE P  Lieb/Lietz                      Manthey Porsche         2m04.881s  +0.511s18.  GTE P  Kobayashi/Vilander              AF Ferrari              2m04.887s  +0.517s19.  GTE P  Bergmeister/Pilet               Manthey Porsche         2m05.049s  +0.679s20.  GTE P  Bruni/Fisichella                AF Ferrari              2m05.222s  +0.852s21.  GTE A  Nygaard/Poulsen/Thiim           Aston Martin            2m05.903s22.  GTE A  Gerber/Griffin/Cioci            AF Ferrari              2m05.918s  +0.015s23.  GTE A  Potolicchio/Aguas/Rigon         8Star Ferrari           2m06.150s  +0.247s24.  GTE A  Ried/Roda/Ruberti               Proton Porsche          2m06.416s  +0.513s25.  GTE A  Narac/Vernay/Palttala           Imsa Porsche            2m06.738s  +0.835s26.  GTE A  Campbell-Walter/Hall/Adam       Aston Martin            2m06.943s  +1.040s27.  GTE A  Krohn/Jonsson/Mediani           Krohn Ferrari           2m07.584s  +1.681s28.  GTE A  Bornhauser/Canal/Rees           Larbre Corvette         2m07.669s  +1.766s

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