Porsche topped the timesheets after the first two Free Practice sessions of the latest FIA WEC round at the 6 Hours of Nurburgring.
In the first Free Practice session, Porsche’s Marc Lieb, Romain Dumas and Neel Jani were ahead of their team-mates Brendon Hartley, Timo Bernhard and Mark Webber by only +0.047 of a second in first and second places respectively.
The #2 Porsche’s fastest time was a 1.41.703 as they completed 34 laps on the Hard Michelin compound tyre, compared to the #1 919 Hybrid’s 1.41.750.
Audi Sport’s #7 Audi R18 of Marcel Fässler and André Lotterer were only over a tenth of a second behind the #1 Porsche’s time in third. While the #8 Audi of Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval and Oliver Jarvis were fourth.
While the Toyota Gazoo Racing outfit were fifth and sixth places respectively with the high downforce TS050 version making its first public appearance on-track. Sébastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Anthony Davidson at the wheel were fifth with the #5 car whilst Stéphane Sarrazin, Kamui Kobayashi and Mike Conway were sixth in the #6 TS050 car.
Rebellion Racing on the Dunlop tyres were seventh and eighth places respectively in their #13 and #12 R-One cars. Bykolles Racing Team were the last of the LMP1 class in ninth in the #4 CLM P1/01 car.
In the LMP2 class, the #26 crew of G-Drive Racing with Alex Brundle, René Rast and Roman Rusinov led the class after FP1 after Brundle set a 1.50.748 at the end of their 37 lap stint.
The #44 Manor of Antonio Pizzonia, Matt Howson and Tor Graves were second, behind the G-Drive outfit in their Oreca 05 – Nissan car. While the #42 Strakka Racing crew of Nick Leventis, Lewis Williamson and Jonny Kane finished third after FP1.
Whilst in the LMGTE Pro class, Gianmaria Bruni and James Calado in the AF Corse 488 GTE were ahead of the Aston Martin Racing crews of Darren Turner and Richie Stanaway in second, while Nicki Thiim and Marco Sørensen in the sister V8 Vantage were third, behind their team-mates Turner and Stanaway.
Finally, in the LMGTE Amateur class, the #98 Aston Martin Racing Vantage V8 run by Mathias Lauda, Pedro Lamy and Paul Dalla Lana led in FP1, ahead of Larbre Competition’s Corvette C7 and the AF Corse crew of Emanuel Collard, François Perrodo and Rui Aguas.
Free Practice 2 – Webber leads for Porsche as Dumas crashes out
Mark Webber in the Porsche 919 Hybrid led Free Practice Two after his team-mate Romain Dumas had a crash at Turn Five, ending the session.
The #1 Porsche of Webber, Timo Bernhard and Brendon Hartley put in a 1.40.997 on their twelfth lap and put on a total of 37 laps to leading the timesheets at the end of FP2.
Audi Sport’s #7 R18 of Marcel Fässler and André Lotterer were second, ahead of their team-mates Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval and Oliver Jarvis by over a tenth of a second in the #8 Audi.
Toyota Gazoo Racing’s #6 TS050 of Stéphane Sarrazin, Kamui Kobayashi and Mike Conway were fourth while Marc Lieb, Neel Jani and Romain Dumas were fifth in the sister Porsche 919 Hybrid #2 car after Dumas’ crash at Turn Five ended FP2.
The sister Toyota Gazoo Racing #5 car of Sébastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Anthony Davidson were in sixth place. Whilst the #13 Rebellion Racing, #4 Bykolles Racing Team and #12 Rebellion Racing crews completed the top nine competitors in the LMP1 Class after FP2.
There was no change for the LMP2 leader after FP2 as Alex Brundle, René Rast and Roman Rusinov led the class in their Oreca 05 – Nissan G-Drive Racing #26 outfit with a 1.48.965 after putting in 42 laps in the session.
The #42 Strakka Racing crew of Nick Leventis, Lewis Williamson and Jonny Kane were second, ahead of the #45 Manor crew of Roberto Merhi, Matthew Rao and Richard Bradley in third.
In the LMGTE Pro class, Richie Stanaway and Darren Turner lead the category in the Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage, ahead of FP1 leaders Gianmaria Bruni and James Calado in the AF Corse 488 Italia. Their team-mates for AF Corse Davide Rigon and Sam Bird in the #71 car were third.
Finally, in the LMGTE Amateur class, the #83 AF Corse 458 Italia crew of Emanuel Collard, François Perrodo and Rui Aguas led the session, ahead of Larbre Competition and the #88-run Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing outfit.