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2018 24 Hours of Le Mans - Toyota on Pole Position

LM24 Qualifying.jpg

The #8 Toyota TS050 Hybrid of Fernando Alonso, Sébastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima secure Pole Position for the 86th running of the legendary Le Mans 24 hours.


Never looking likely to be beaten at the Circuit de la Sarthe, the big budget Toyota factory team performed a flawless performance to secure a dominant 1 - 2 result in qualification for the 2018 Le Mans 24 Hours this coming weekend.

New star driver, and former double Formula One World Championship winner Fernando Alonso ended up sharing the Pole Position car this evening, the Spanish star getting plenty of laps under his belt in wet and dark conditions as the team consolidated a strong start to the three part qualification sessions, eventually topping out the times thanks to a superb lap from Japanese ace Nakajima to put the most high profile car on the grid a solid two seconds clear of the sister #7 machine, driven by Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi, José María López.

Behind the dominant Toyota team would be the #1 Rebellion Racing entry of former winners André Lotterer, Neel Jani and LMP2 World Champion Bruno Senna, the privately run Gibson powered R13 finishing the day just over four seconds shy of the fastest time.

Securing themselves a second row slot for the race on Saturday would be the #17 SMP Racing car of Matevos Isaakyan, Egor Orudzhev and Stéphane Sarrazin, the Russian concern out pacing the other Rebellion machine by just four tenths of a second, themselves just under a tenth away from the best of the privateer entries this weekend.

LMP2 would be a charged affair during most of the running today, eventually falling the way of the impressive IDEC Sport #48 Oreca of Paul Lafargue, Paul-Loup Chatin and Memo Rojas, the team taking fastest time by the closest of margins with just less than one tenth separating them from the Dragonspeed Oreca of Jazeman Jaafar, Nabil Jeffr and Weiron Tan in the #37 car. A further four tenths would cover the next four cars, headed by G-Drive Racing from TDS Racing, the struggling LMP1 Manor car and Panis Barthez Competition fifth in class.

Heading the chasing LMGTE Pro field would unsurprisingly be the mighty Porsche #91 of Richard Lietz - Gianmaria Bruni and Frédéric Makowiecki. With performance seemingly to spare over the GTE Pro field, this experienced team would wind up an impressive 1.6 seconds clear of the distinctive "Pink Pig" sister car of Michael Christensen, Kevin Estre and Laurens Vanthoor in the #92 machine, just under a tenth ahead of the first of the Ford contingent in third, Stefan Mücke, Olivier Pla and Billy Johnson flying the flag for Chip Ganassi in the American run sportscar from the blue oval.

Over in LMGTE AM it would again be a Porsche benefit, with the #88 Dempsey-Proton Racing 911 mixing it with the rear of the GTE Pro field, Matteo Cairoli, Khaled Al Qubaisi and Giorgio Roda taking the class pole by over half a second from the iconic liveried #86 Gulf Racing 911 of Ben Barker, Alex Davison and Michael Wainwright.

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Qualifying what you expected? Looking forward to the race? Any stand out performances, in your opinion? Let us know in the comments section below!

 
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How is the #91 Porsche GTE 1.6 seconds faster than it's sister car, let alone the rest of the GTE grid?
 
How is the #91 Porsche GTE 1.6 seconds faster than it's sister car, let alone the rest of the GTE grid?
We are talking about lemans, in this race for qualifying your time depends off the traffic, that should explain that.
 
If I had to pick a car to root for it would be the #1 Rebellion. They've been scammed out of podiums at both last years Le Mans (homologate my arse), and last month at Spa (dodgy skid block rule). So I'd like some good fortune to come their way to make up for it.

Realistically though, the Toyota's could switch to a slower but more reliable setup/engine map and still be the best car out there. So if they somehow fail to get at least one car to the finish again they'll be a laughing stock.
 
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apex11

@Simberia
Personally I would love to see some F1 reject win........So i am routing for Bruno... just be funny with all the attention on Alonso..

Has anyone counted how many ex F1 drivers are racing this year?
Or it is all about Alonso.
 
Im pretty new to this forum and to Sim racing. I love Le Mans its like Racing Christmass to me lol.Im on FIA GTR 2 and have been running the Le Mans 2016 track i got from NGR and just did a 4:14 in a 2004 Dams Lambo (at Night). I'd like to see Alonso Get that #2 Tripple crown win and Toyota FINALLY a win but truth be told Im also routing for an LMP 2 car like the Jackie Chan to win the overall victory. Cant wait for the onboard camera scenes at night.
 
Porsche admits Bruni's provisional pole time lucky

Translation: We're not really that fast, no need to alter BoP:p
 
Has anyone counted how many ex F1 drivers are racing this year?
Or it is all about Alonso.
In german commentary they said it were 23 drivers who once raced in F1, imo that's a huge number. Haven't counted myself so not sure if that number is correct, but it seems realistic.
 
It's sad to see JP Montaya not sitting in a competitive LMP1 car, otherwise he could win the triple crown this weekend. Then I'd give anything to see Nando's face.
 

Mitja Bonca

Premium
Like they have any true competition? The worst LeMans ever, based on the comeption in the strongest series (1 team 2 cars, LOL - it`s more like competing against by your self).

But... based on the Toyota`s history here at LeMans, you know what we can expect .... :)
 
I admire Alonso, but it gets a bit tiring to see his name everywhere. Nakajima qualified the #8 Toyota and Buemi is not a tourist either.

Toyota is not in a different position as Audi a few years ago or "legendary" Porsche years when they had a dozen 962 against weak competition or a couple of 917 or 936 against nobody at all. I understand the BoP with privateers takes fuel burn into the equation, so perhaps the margin they seem to have after qualification is not that big. Anyway even just a battle between #7 and #8 on Sunday could be great. In the worst case, there will be a big Porsche vs Ford fight in GT Pro.
 
I admire Alonso, but it gets a bit tiring to see his name everywhere. Nakajima qualified the #8 Toyota and Buemi is not a tourist either.

Toyota is not in a different position as Audi a few years ago or "legendary" Porsche years when they had a dozen 962 against weak competition or a couple of 917 or 936 against nobody at all. I understand the BoP with privateers takes fuel burn into the equation, so perhaps the margin they seem to have after qualification is not that big. Anyway even just a battle between #7 and #8 on Sunday could be great. In the worst case, there will be a big Porsche vs Ford fight in GT Pro.

The only normal tweet/title i saw about this, is :
screen199.jpg
 
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