Toyota’s top first practice at Spa-Francorchamps as Alonso sets fastest time

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Credit: Craig Robertson

The Toyota Gazoo Racing team topped the timesheets for the first practice session of the 2018-19 FIA World Endurance Championship Super Season at Spa Francorchamps in Belgium.

Sébastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Fernando Alonso took the #8 Toyota TS050 around  the Belgian circuit with a lap time of 1:58.392, ahead of the sister #7 car of Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez, just 0.237 seconds off pace.

The first of the non-hybrid cars was the #3 Rebellion R13 of Mathias Beche, Thomas Laurent and Gustavo Menezes with a time of 1:58.849 to go third fastest ahead of the #10 Dragonspeed car.

Bruno Senna was the only driver to trouble the leaders as he took the #1 Rebellion R13 to second fastest mid-session before dropping down to fifth place.

The #4 Bykolles Racing Team car finished sixth, ahead of SMP Racing’s #17 and #11 cars which were split by the LMP2 leaders Roberto Gonzalez, Pastor Maldonado and Nathanael Berthon in the #31 Dragonspeed car.

Second fastest of the LMP2 class was the #36 Signatech Alpine Matmut, with the #36 G-Drive Racing car with Paris e-Prix winner Jean-Eric Vergne aboard.

Credit: Craig Robertson

Fastest in the GT class was the two Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK cars of Tony Kanaan, Harry Tincknell and Andy Priaulx in the #67 car, ahead of the sister #66 car of Stefan Mucke, Olivier Pla and Billy Johnson.

Following closely were the two Porsche 911 RSR’s of Gianmaria Bruni and Richard Lietz in the #91 and Michael Christensen and Kevin Estre in the #92 car.

Defending champions James Calado and Alessandro Pier Guidi finished just outside of the top three with the LMGTE Am car of Giorgio Roda, Matteo Cairoli and Khaled Al Qubaisi out pacing the second Ferrari, two BMW’s and the two Aston Martin’s.

Credit: Craig Robertson

Second in the LMGTE Am class was Benjamin Barker, Michael Wainwright and Alexander Davison in the Gulf Racing Porsche ahead of Julien Andlauer, Christian Ried and Matt Campbell.

Both of the CEFC TRSM Racing Ginetta’s completed an installation lap before parking up for the rest of the session, being the only two cars not to set a time.

Full results can be found here.

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