Rebellion claims pole for WEC's season reboot at Spa

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Rebellion claims pole for WEC's season reboot at Spa

Le Mans/WEC

Rebellion claims pole for WEC's season reboot at Spa

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Rebellion Racing is set to start from pole for the 2020 6 Hours of Spa Francorchamps, the first FIA WEC race since Lone Star Le Mans at CoTA back in February.

Norman Nato and Gustavo Menezes took the front row slot for the Swiss-flagged team in its No. 1 R13 Gibson with a 1m59.577s combined average. The duo combined for the only time under 2 minutes in the session with the help of the car’s low-downforce aero package. The result came after Rebellion set the fastest time in all three practice sessions prior to qualifying.

Toyota Gazoo Racing’s pair of TS050 HYBRIDs, which are debuting the new 2020 low-drag kit for the car ahead of Le Mans next month, will start second and third in LMP1, the No. 8 ahead of the No. 7; the faster of the two managing a 2m00.417s.

ByKolles, in its return to the FIA WEC with its CLM in its first appearance since Le Mans 2019, will start fourth with a 2L01.907, just 0.8s off the No. 7 Toyota in third.

LMP2, which is a car down after a positive COVID test for Gabriel Aubry and multiple mechanics forced Algarve Pro Racing to withdraw from the meeting, was topped by United Autosports.

Phil Hanson and Paul Di Resta combined for a 2m02.148s in the No.22 ORECA, which was 1.5s clear of the rest of the field. The No. 38 JOTA ORECA, which was fastest of the two Goodyear runners, will start second, with the Cool Racing ORECA third.

Racing Team Nederland, meanwhile, will start last in the category after a tough run from Job van Uitert, who had all his laps deleted and therefore made the team’s run invalid. He took control of the car after Geido van der Garde set a 2m02.744s, which had been good enough for second in the class early in the session.

There were no real dramas to speak of beyond that, though the guest-entered Eurasia Motorsport Ligier JS P217, the only Ligier in the field for this weekend, had a spin with Nobuya Yamanaka at the wheel.

In the GT classes, GTE Pro initially saw Porsche’s factory crew take the top spot, after a 2m14.207s average time in the No. 92 911 RSR 19 from Kevin Estre and Michael Christensen. That was good enough to put the duo over four tenths clear of the two Aston Martin Racing Vantage AMRs that completed the top three in the class.

However, after the session Estre had his fast lap deleted for a track limits violation, pushing the car to the back of the grid as the Frenchman had no other valid times.

This meant that Aston Martin Racing locked out the front row with the No. 97 Vantage of Alex Lynn and Maxime Martin quickest, ahead of the championship-leading No. 95 of Nicki Thiim and Marco Sorensen. It was tight between the two Astons, less than a tenth separated them on this occasion.

Lining up third in Pro will be the No. 91 factory Porsche 911 RSR 19, ahead of the two AF Corse Ferraris, neither of which could get within a second of the pole time.

In GTE Am, Dempsey Proton’s No. 77 Porsche took the pole, ahead of Team Project 1’s newly livered No. 56 Porsche. Christian Ried, Matt Campbell and Riccardo Pera will start from pole with their 2m16.519s average.

Ben Keating’s performance in the No. 57 Team Project 1 911 made it a 1-2-3 for the German marque. The first of the other chassis in the category was the No. 98 Aston Martin, with the points-leading No. 83 AF Corse Ferrari slotting in fifth.

Saturday’s race is set to get underway at 1:30 p.m. local time in Belgium. The start and finish will air on the Motor Trend channel in the USA.

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