Glickenhaus tops opening Monza practice as Peugeot makes WEC debut

JEP/Motorsport Images

Glickenhaus tops opening Monza practice as Peugeot makes WEC debut

Le Mans/WEC

Glickenhaus tops opening Monza practice as Peugeot makes WEC debut


U.S.-flagged Le Mans Hypercar team Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus led the way in the opening Free Practice session of the FIA World Endurance Championship 6 Hours of Monza. Romain Dumas was the team’s quickest driver, putting the single 007 LMH on the entry in its striking new blue livery top with a 1m37.984s.

The Frenchman’s time turned out to be 0.618s faster than the Alpine A480 Gibson that took second after spending much of the opening portion of the session at the top of the standings after a strong banker lap from Andre Negrao.

Behind them was the first of the two Peugeot 9X8s in a pretty promising start to the French manufacturer’s debut with its brand-new challenger. The No. 93 9X8 was the quicker of the two, and managed to complete 40 laps in the 90-minute session, with the best time coming courtesy of Paul di Resta.

A solid start for the new Peugeot 9X8, courtesy of Paul Di Resta. JEP/Motorsport Images

The second of the Peugeots didn’t complete as much mileage as the sister car, though. It ended up 20th overall, slower than the entire LMP2 field after just 12 tours of the Autodromo Nazionale, spending much of the session in its pit box. It was a troubled session, but as this is very early days for the program, teething troubles are to be expected.

Outside the top three, completing the top five in the overall rankings were the two Toyotas, the No. 8 GR010 HYBRID leading the No. 7, 1.1 and 1.3 seconds off the ultimate pace respectively.

In the LMP2 class, AF Corse’s No. 83 ORECA set the fastest time, with Alessio Rovera at the wheel, reeling off a 1m39.973s. This was 0.4s quicker than Norman Nato’s best time in the No. 41 Realteam by WRT ORECA that ended up second. The No. 34 Inter Europol ORECA finished up the day third.

All three manufacturers were represented in the top three in GTE Pro, where the No. 92 Porsche set the pace with Kevin Estre posting a 1m47.273s. The No. 52 AF Corse Ferrari slotted in second after producing a lap within a tenth of the No. 92, while the full-season No. 64 Corvette Racing C8.R took third. Tommy Milner, who along with Nick Tandy, is aiming for a strong result in Corvette Racing’s first race weekend in Italy, said the session went well for the U.S. marque to kick off the weekend.

“It’s a super-cool racetrack and very, very fast,” he said. “It seems like to get a good lap time here, the car balance needs to be a little bit free, which is a lot of fun to drive on this circuit. It was a good first session for me. I’m comfortable with the car and the track right away. Things feel really good. Our pace looks decently good. We couldn’t have asked for a better first session.”

The No. 91 Porsche ended up fourth. This weekend Richard Lietz is unable to compete due to illness, so the team has brought in Fred Makowiecki — who was part of the No. 91 crew at Le Mans — to share driving duties with Gianmaria Bruni.

In Am, Ben Barnicoat set the pace in the No. 56 Team Project 1 Porsche in what turned out to be a 1-2-3 for the German make. GR Racing’s 911 RSR 19 ended up second with Project 1’s sister No. 46 Porsche third, all three within a second of each other.


UP NEXT: Free Practice 2, is set to get underway at 9:00am local time Saturday.