A total of 42 cars from three classes were present at the 2016 European Le Mans Series test held at Paul Ricard, with Frenchman Olivier Pla setting the fastest time overall in the Krohn Racing Ligier.
Pla, who recently claimed pole position at the 12 Hours of Sebring, set a 1:48.100s in the very first session to put the Nissan-powered Ligier JS P2 at the top of the timesheets.
His fastest lap was five hundredths of a second under the best time posted at last year’s prologue by Nathanael Berthon.
Four different LMP2 chassis occupied the top five places at the end of the two-day test, with Pierre Thiriet pedalling the Thiriet by TDS Racing Oreca 05-Nissan to a 1:48.297 in second.
Third quickest was the Greaves Motorsport Ligier JS P2-Nissan on a 1:48.596 set by Memo Rojas, while SMP Racing’s BR01-Nissan finished fourth with Stefano Coletti registering a 1:48.745 to top the night session.
The Gibson 015S-Nissan bearing the G-Drive/Jota Sport partnership ended the test in the top five thanks to a 1:49.004 lap from Harry Tincknell.
Full results below.
The vast majority of LMP3 entries finished above the GTE field in the overall order. Of the 21 cars that took part it was the #2 United Autosports Ligier JS P3 that led the way with Alex Brundle at the wheel. Brundle set a 1:53.364 in the opening session and would not be beaten all test with the closest challenge coming from Simon Gauchet in the Panis/Barthez Competition Ligier at 1:53.980.
United Autosports’ sister car also occupied the sharp end of the class and ended the test third. Two French entries from Duqueine Engineering and Graff completed the top five.
LMGTE featured seven cars and was topped by a quartet of Ferrari 458 Italias. AF Corse’s Marco Cioci recorded the fastest lap of the test with a 1:57.252 aboard the #51 machine, going 0.34s quicker than Matt Griffin in the sister #55 car.
Third overall was JMW Motorsport’s Andrea Bertolini, with Alessandro Pier Guidi taking fourth for AT Racing.
The highest non-Ferrari entry was the Proton Competition Porsche 911 RSR, which in the hands of Renger van der Zande set a best time of 1:57.765. Van der Zande was able to put the Porsche ahead of the title-defending Formula Racing Ferrari and the Aston Martin Racing Vantage.
2016 ELMS Testing Results
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