DragonSpeed steams ahead to Spa-Francorchamps pole


Credit: ELMS/Jakob Ebrey Photography

The DragonSpeed team secured a front row lockout at the 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, with the #21 Oreca sweeping to pole ahead of the sister #22 G-Drive squad.

In the hands of Ben Hanley, the #21 marched to a 2:02.457s lap on the second run, fourth tenths quicker than G-Drive’s returning Ryo Hirakawa, who missed the previous two rounds thanks to clashing Super GT duties.

Oreca runners occupied the top three as the #39 Graff of Enzo Guibbert was a further 0.2s down, and will start Sunday’s race alongside the #32 United Autosports Ligier.

The second Graff – the #40 – headed a trio of Ligiers, as the #25 Algarve Pro Racing of Andrea Pizzitola beat the #23 Panis-Barthez Competition of Nathanael Berthon and Paul-Loup Chatin‘s #28 IDEC Sport.

The winner of the previous race – the #27 of SMP Racing – could only managed the ninth best time in the LMP2 class, but was the fastest of the quartet of Dallara runners around the 7km circuit.

LMP3

AT Racing took its second LMP3 class pole of 2017, as Mikkel Jensen clocked in a 2:13.634s lap in his #9 Ligier JS P3. The #3 United Autosports of Wayne Boyd was seventh-tenths of a second behind their fellow Ligier runner, but he pipped stablemate Sean Rayhall in the championship-leading #2.

Ross Kaiser took the #6 360 Racing Ligier to fourth place ahead of the #7 Duqueine Engineering squad, the fastest of the Norma M30 runners in the hands of David Droux.

Panis-Barthez‘s #16 Ligier beat the #17 Ultimate squad to sixth in class, as Dario Capitanio took the #10 Oregon Norma to seventh ahead of Alex Kapadia in the #15 RLR Msport.

The #4 Cool Racing by GPC Ligier had its best time cancelled for a track limits violation, and will join the #5 By Speed Factory squad at the very back of the ELMS grid.

LMGTE

Matteo Cairoli took Proton Competition‘s first pole of 2017, and the #77 Porsche 911 will start ahead of TF Sport‘s #90 Aston Martin Vantage in Sunday’s race.

Cairoli was 0.358s faster than Nicki Thiim in the #90, who was over half a second faster than former Formula 1 driver Will Stevens, who made his return in the #66 JMW Motorsport Ferrari.

Spirit of Race occupied fourth and fifth spots in the LMGTE class, as Matt Griffin took the #51 Ferrari 488 ahead of the #55 of Andrea Bertolini. Beechdeen AMR‘s #99 Aston Martin occupies last in class, with Ross Gunn two-tenths further back.