Dramatic qualifying at Spa

The qualifying to the four-hour race at Spa Francorchamps was a dramatic event.

First, the GTE cars opened the session with their 12-minute qualifying.

TF Sport Aston Martin #95 had a bad start when Ross Gunn got taken for Track Limits already on his first lap.

Proton Competition Porsche #93 set the fastest time on their first flying lap, ahead of Iron Lynx Ferrari #80 and AF Corse Ferrari #88.

But there was still a bit under six minutes left of the session to improve the times.

Michelle Gatting in Iron Lynx Ferrari #83 got her first flying lap deleted due to Track Limits.

Several teams chose to pit after new tires and then do one, maybe two flying laps if they were quick enough.

Proton Competition Porsche #77 was on the way to Pole Position, missing it with just a few thousandths – before the time got deleted due to Track Limits.

But no one could beat Richard Lietz (plus Michael Fassbender and Felipe Laser) in Proton Competition Porsche #93, who claimed Pole Position, ahead of Iron Lynx Ferrari #80 with Miguel Molina (plus Rino Mastronardi and Matteo Cressoni), while AF Corse Ferrari #88 with Alessio Rovera (plus Emmanuel Collard and Francois Perrodo) qualified third.

Michelle Gatting lost yet another flying lap due to Track Limits, and hence no time was set by Iron Lynx Ferrari #83 in the qualifying, so Rahel Frey and local hero Sarah Bovy would have to start from last tomorrow – right behind Proton Competition Porsche #77 with Matt Campbell (plus Christian Ried and Cooper MacNeil), who didn’t set any time either.

Proton Competition Porsche #93
Photo: JJ Media

Afterwards, the sixteen LMP3 cars went out to the track to start their session.

The cars, however, only managed to do their first flying lap before the red flag happened. Racing Experience #12 with David Hauser went off at the top of Raidillon. Luckily, Hauser could come out of the car by himself. But the car was damaged and he must drop by the Medical Center to get checked.

MV2S Racing #5 also stalled in the middle of the track, but it was a technical problem that had nothing to do with Hauser’s accident.

It took about half an hour before the tire wall got repaired and the cars could continue their qualifying session.

DKR Engineering #4 was the first car to set a fast time, while United Autosports #2 and Inter Europol Competition #13 tried to match it, but Laurents Hörr managed to extend the gap even more.

Malthe Jakobsen got his first flying lap deleted due to Track Limits, but he could keep the second one, on board RLR MSport #15, which sent him up to fourth place in LMP3 with a couple of minutes left on the clock.

DKR Engineering #4 with Laurents Hörr (plus Mathieu de Barbuat) took Pole Position, ahead of Inter Europol Competition #13 with Ugo De Wilde (plus Martin Hippe and Aidan Read), and with United Autosports #2 Wayne Boyd (plus Robert Wheldon and Edouard Cauhaupe) in third.

DKR Engineering #4
Photo: JJ Media

Then there was only the 15-minute LMP2 qualifying left.

Two minutes in, the session was stopped by a new red flag when United Autosports #32 with Nico Jamin had a big accident at the top of Raidillon, a few metres from where the LMP3 car had hit.

It caused a long period of rebuilding the tire barrier before the qualifying could continue with nine minutes left.

Racing Team Turkey #34 was the first car on the track, but they pitted for new tires straight away.

After that, it took a long time before a fast time was set. Team WRT #41 was the fastest in the first attempt, followed by Algarve Pro Racing #24.

BHK Motorsport #35 had a solo spin in Turn 1, but Sergio Campana could continue by himself.

COOL Racing #37 jumped up to the first place with their new driver Charles Milesi behind the wheel. United Autosports #22 squeezed themselves into second place.

Racing Team Turkey #34 went over the gravel in the Stavelot corner, but Harry Tincknell came back to the asphalt without needing any help.

COOL Racing #37
Photo: JJ Media

COOL Racing #37 with Charles Milesi (plus Nico Lapierre and Alexandre Coigny) took Pole Position in both general LMP2 and LMP2 Pro/Am, ahead of United Autosports #22 with Phil Hanson (plus Tom Gamble and Jonathan Aberdein), and with local heroes Team WRT #41 with Louis Deletraz (plus Robert Kubica and Yifei Ye) in third.

The 4-hour race will start at eleven o’clock tomorrow and can be streamed on YouTube.

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