Sportscars: top three for Ferrari in FIA WEC Imola qualifying, Manthey-Pure Rxcing-Porsche on pole in GT3

Sportscars: top three for Ferrari in FIA WEC Imola qualifying, Manthey-Pure Rxcing-Porsche on pole in GT3

Antonio Fuoco (m.) celebrates taking the pole position with teammates Nielsen and Giovinazzi

It is impossible to say if there is a home advantage or if the recent adjustments in power and weight (see our WEC news from yesterday) have gone too far, but so far Ferrari is dominating the FIA ​​​​WEC weekend at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino. Ferrari at Imola. After the Ferraris had already set the pace in the free practice sessions, the three 499Ps also took the first three places in qualifying. Pole position went to Antonio Fuoco, who set a time of 1:29.466 in factory car number 50 (Fuoco/Molina/Nielsen), ahead of Robert Shwartzman in AF Corse-Ferrari (Kubica/Shwartzman/Ye). ahead. Alessandro Pier Guidi qualified the second factory Ferrari (Pier Guidi/Calado/Giovinazzi) in third place. The GT3 pole went to Alex Malykhin in the No. 92 Manthey-Pure Rxcing Porsche, who won the class earlier in the season in Qatar.

Text: René de Boer (X: @renedeboer)

With their strong performance in the hyperpole period and the ‘clean sweep’ of the first three positions on the grid, the Ferraris confirmed their consistency, which was already evident in the free practice sessions, although the top ten could be within 1.2 seconds. without complaining about the fairness of the competition. Behind the three Ferraris, with the AF Corse car splitting the two works cars, the two works Porsches finished, led by Kévin Estre in No. 6 (Estre/Lotterer/Vanthoor), the winning car of Qatar, and Campbell in No. 5. (Campbell /Christensen/Makowiecki).

50 FUOCO Antonio (ita), MOLINA Miguel (spa), NIELSEN Nicklas (dnk), Ferrari AF Corse, Ferrari 499P #50, Hypercar, action during the 2024 6 Hours of Imola, round 2 of the 2024 World Endurance Championship FIA, from April 18 to 21, 2024 at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola - Photo Julien Delfosse / DPPI
The number 50 Ferrari starts from pole at Imola

Kamui Kobayashi qualified the fastest of the two Toyotas, the No. 7 (Conway/Kobayashi/De Vries) in sixth, followed by René Rast, who in the No. 20 BMW (S. van der Linde/Frijns/Rast) had The best WEC ever. qualifying results so far. The No. 8 Toyota (Buemi/Hartley/Hirakawa) and two customer Porsches from Hertz Team Jota (Stevens/Ilott/Nato) and Proton Competition (Tincknell/Jani/Andlauer) completed the top ten.

Both new Peugeots, which now have a rear wing, debuting at Imola, did not qualify for the fastest ten in the hyperpole period. This also applied to two Alpines, two Italian brands Lamborghini and Isotta Fraschini, Cadillac and the second BMW.

92 MALYKHIN Aliaksandr (kna), STURM Joel (ger), BACHLER Klaus (out), Manthey Purerxcing, Porsche 911 GT3 R #91, LM GT3, action during the 2024 6 Hours of Imola, round 2 of the World Endurance Championship of the FIA ​​2024, from April 18 to 21, 2024 at the Enzo and Dino Ferrari Stadium in Imola, Italy - Photo Clément Luck / DPPI
Sorry for Manthey-Pure Rxcing-Porsche in GT3

In GT3, Alex Malykhin in the number 92 Manthey Porsche was fastest with a time of 1:42.365. This put him 0.693 seconds faster than Ian James in the No. 27 Aston Martin Racing Heart (James/Mancinelli/Riberas). Behind them, just six thousandths of a second apart, are the two WRT BMWs, with number 46 (Al Harthy/Rossi/Martin) ahead of number 31 (Leung/Gelael/Farfus). The Iron Dames Lamborghini (Bovy/Pin/Gatting) took fifth, ahead of the No. 88 Proton Competition-Ford (Roda/Pedersen/Olsen). The No. 91 Manthey-EMA Porsche (Shahin/Schuring/Lietz) starts seventh in class.