WEC Qatar Test: Jota Porsche Still Fastest in Second Session

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WEC Qatar Prologue: Jota Porsche remains quickest in second session

Callum Ilott demonstrated his prowess at the helm of the British team’s #12 Porsche 963 LMDh during the night session on Monday, setting the pace with a blistering 1m40.541s lap early in the five-hour stint at the Losail International Circuit.

The Jota team’s privateer cars made an impressive start in the second session of the two-day Prologue, following their participation in the optional Monday afternoon period, during which most of the Hypercar field chose not to partake.

Jenson Button held onto second place on the time charts for the initial two hours in the #38 entry with a time of 1m40.950s, until Antonio Fuoco in the leading AF Corse-run factory Ferrari 499P Le Mans Hypercar overtook him.

Fuoco’s rapid lap of 1m40.673s in the #50 Ferrari placed him within three-tenths of Ilott, relegating Button to third in the final standings.

WEC Qatar Test: Jota Porsche Still Fastest in Second Session
WEC Qatar Test: Jota Porsche Still Fastest in Second Session (Credits: Autosport)

The #51 Ferrari, piloted by James Calado, consistently challenged the frontrunners, while teammate Antonio Giovinazzi secured fourth position with a time of 1m41.026s.

Earl Bamber, driving the solo Ganassi-run Cadillac Racing entry, claimed fifth place. Bamber improved his position in the penultimate hour, clocking 1m41.196s to surpass Yifei Ye’s time and push AF’s customer Ferrari into sixth.

Mikkel Jensen’s late improvement to 1m41.587s elevated the #93 Peugeot 9X8s LMH to seventh place in the final classification.

Michael Christensen secured eighth place with a time of 1m41.913s, the best result among the Porsche Penske Motorsport entries.

BMW, one of the newcomers to the Hypercar class this season, claimed ninth place, with Marco Wittmann posting a time of 1m41.971s in the fastest of the WRT-run BMW M Hybrid V8s LMDhs.

Laurens Vanthoor rounded up the top 10 in the second works Porsche 963s, setting a time of 1m42.013s.

Further down the order, Rene Rast took eleventh place in the second BMW, while Stoffel Vandoorne secured twelfth for the #94 Peugeot.

Sebastien Buemi placed thirteenth in the best of the Toyota GR010 HYBRID LMHs with a time of 1m42.452s, leaving the reigning champion marque nearly two seconds behind the leader on the 3.37-mile Losail circuit.

The Lamborghini SC63 LMDh, fielded by Iron Lynx, debuted competitively in sixteenth place, while the two Alpine A424 LMDhs claimed seventeenth and eighteenth positions in the 19-car Hypercar field.

In the new LMGT3 class, the United Autosports McLaren team led the pack, with Gregoire Saucy topping the charts in the #59 McLaren 720S GT3 Evo with a time of 1m54.480s, closely followed by Davide Rigon’s AF Corse Ferrari 296 GT3.

The session saw three red flags, with the final interruption caused by a pair of stray cats on the track.

The Prologue is set to resume at 10:00 local time on Tuesday.

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