Buemi leads first Spa 6H practice for Toyota
Toyota Gazoo Racing’s No. 8 GR010 HYBRID set the benchmark time in the first practice session of the 6 Hours of Spa weekend. Sebastien Buemi topped the times with a 2m02.982s, a time just a fraction slower than last year’s pole lap from Glickenhaus, a 2m02.771s.
Buemi’s flyer was 1.6 seconds faster than the other FIA WEC Hypercar class runners. The No. 50 Ferrari came closest, after a 2m04.632s from Antonio Fuoco, who was a tenth up on Jose Maria Lopez in the No. 7 Toyota that completed the top three.
The fastest of the LMDh cars in the class was the No. 6 Porsche Penske 963, following a 2m04.870s from Laurens Vanthoor. The Belgian would end the red flag-interrupted session fifth, below the No. 51 Ferrari that finished up fourth on the timing screens.
The No. 2 Cadillac Racing V-Series.R was sixth, while the brand-new No. 3 example, making a guest appearance this weekend, would set the ninth-fastest time, behind the quickest of the two Peugeot 9X8s — the No. 4.
The other new Hypercar in the field, the No. 38 Porsche 963 from Hertz Team JOTA, was 22nd overall in the times and completed 18 laps, the team using the session as an extended shakedown of its new car. The best time was six seconds off the pace set by Toyota, but this is very much early days and outright speed is not yet a priority.
In LMP2, the No. 22 United Autosports ORECA of Filipe Albuquerque ran just 0.043s faster than the No. 28 JOTA 07 Gibson to top the class with a 2m07.471s. The No. 23 United Autosports ORECA completed the top three.
It was a 1-2 for Ferrari 488 teams in GTE Am, with Kessel Racing’s No. 57 managing a 2m16.177s courtesy of Daniel Serra. The No. 21 AF Corse Ferrari from Ulysse De Pauw ended up second while the ORT by TF Aston Martin slotted in third with a 2m17.168s from Charlie Eastwood.
A pair of red flags interrupted the session, costing the teams almost 10 minutes of running. The first was for an incident at Les Combes for the No. 83 AF Corse Ferrari, the second for contact between the D’Station Aston Martin and the Vanwall.
UP NEXT: Track action continues this afternoon with Free Practice 2 at 4:20 local time.