After two largely incident-free practice sessions in the afternoon, things got a little crazier at Sebring International Raceway on Thursday night.
Several prototype accidents occurred, the most noteworthy of which involved two of the Audi R18 TDIs. Three cars were stopped at the hairpin after a PC car tipped the No. 55 JWA-Avila Porsche 911 (GTE Am class) into a spin. From there, Nick Heidfeld stopped at the exit in his Rebellion Lola Toyota coupe, and that's when the Audis entered the melee. Loic Duval, making his Audi debut in the No. 3 car, ran into the back of Heidfeld, then was rear-ended by the No. 1 about 20 seconds later. Allan McNish in the No. 2 Audi came through moments later, but without getting involved.
Later, the first big accident of the day occurred when the No. 28 Gulf Lola Nissan coupe lost control through turns 5 and 6. Driver Maxime Jousse was reported fine and unharmed after the incident, but the car returned to the pits on a flatbed.
JRM also stopped on track in its HPD ARX-03a, but continued to the end of the session. Steven Kane also had an on-and-off in the Dyson Lola Mazda, without damage.
Despite the Audi dust-up, its No. 2 car still led the times, Tom Kristensen timing in at the end of the session at 1:47.049. Stephane Sarrazin (Starworks HPD ARX-03b) led the WEC P2 class at 1:51.824 right before the end of the session.
Muscle Milk Pickett Racing continued as the best ALMS P1 entry, and best non-diesel, at 1:49.410 in fourth overall with its HPD ARX-03a.
BMW rose to the top of the GT ranks, the No. 56 car driven by Joey Hand, Dirk Mueller and Jonathan Summerton at 2:00.258, ahead of the No. 51 AF Corse Ferrari 458 and the two factory Corvettes.
Other class leaders included Raphael Matos in PC for Performance Tech, the Luxury Racing Ferrari 458 in GTE Am and Spencer Pumpelly in GTC for TRG.