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KOBAYASHI CLAIMS HYPERCAR WEC SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS POLE

MEDIA RELEASE/FIA World Endurance Championship- Photos: supplied

Kamui Kobayashi took pole position for tomorrow’s opening round the 2021 FIA World Endurance Championship, the TOTAL 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, while Kevin Estre starred with a brilliant lap in LMGTE Pro.

View Kobayashi’s lap:

The action-packed qualifying sessions ushered in a new era of endurance racing that witnessed Kobayashi taking the first ever pole position and point for a Hypercar categorised entry.

The No. 7 Toyota Gazoo Racing entered GR010-Hybrid set a best lap of 2m00.747s to head the sister No. 8 car of Kazuki Nakajima by 0.519s.

The third Hypercar entered package of Alpine Elf Matmut didn’t set a time after a technical issue compromised Andre Negrao during the new 10-minute qualifying format.

Kevin Estre took a brilliant pole position in the No. 92 Porsche GT Team entered Porsche 911 RSR-19 after scorching to a best lap of 2m11.219s. This sealed pole by a staggering 1.1s and saw the fastest ever WEC lap in the LMGTE Pro category.

In Estre’s wake was the No. 52 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE EVO driven by Miguel Molina, who was compromised initially by having his first push lap effort struck off for a track limit violation.

Richard Lietz claimed third place driving the No.91 Porsche, ahead of Alessandro Pier Guidi in the No. 51 Ferrari.

Antonio Garcia completed the Pro class order after setting a 2m13.106 lap in the No. 63 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R he will share with Oliver Gavin.

In LMP2, Filipe Albuquerque continued his scintillating free practice form to take a clear pole position in the United Autosports USA entered Oreca-Gibson.

The reigning champions lapped 0.5s faster than the No.26 G-Drive Racing Aurus 01 driven by Nyck de Vries, although the Dutch ace looked to be mounting a challenge on his final lap but ultimately had to settle for a front-row start.

The LMGTE Am class fell to Ben Keating in the No. 33 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage after he put in a superb performance with a 2m14.660 best lap. That beat No.98 Aston Martin Racing entry of Paul Dalla Lana by just under a second

Two separate incidents at Raidillon saw red flags fly with the No. 77 Dempsey Proton causing the first, while Egidio Perfetti’s Team Project 1 Porsche had a similar off. Both drivers were able to walk away unharmed from the sizeable impacts.

Tomorrow’s race will commence at 13h30 CEST

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