Audi improved its pace in the second Le Mans Series free practice session at Paul Ricard on Friday to beat the ORECA Peugeot to the top of the time sheet.
Dindo Capello and Allan McNish, who are racing without regular teammate Tom Kristensen this weekend because the Dane is still recovering from a torn heel tendon, bettered the fastest time of the customer 908 by three tenths of a second, as preparations for the season-opening, eight-hour race continue.
The factory Aston Martin of Adrian Fernandez, Harold Primat and Stefan Mucke was third fastest, albeit two seconds off the pace of the Audi R15 plus. The Mansell family Ginetta was fourth, ahead of the first Rebellion Racing Lola, of Neel Jani and Nicolas Prost, and the Signature customer Aston of Franck Mailleux, Pierre Ragues and Vanina Ickx.
The Quifel Ginetta was the quickest of the LMP2 class cars, but only one hundredth of a second faster than the Strakka HPD. The first of the Oak Racing Pescarolos was a distant third.
Marc Lieb and Richard Lietz set the pace in GT2 in their Felbermayr Porsche, two tenths quicker than the first of the AF Corse Ferraris. Rob Bell and Darren Turner made it three different makes in the top three in their JMW Aston Martin Vantage.
Giancarlo Fisichella and Jean Alesi continued their acclimatization to GT racing, finishing the day's second session 10th in class and 35th overall in an AF Corse Ferrari 430.
The Rebellion Lola of Andrea Belicchi, Jean-Christophe Boullion and Guy Smith and the ORECA of Soheil Ayari, Didier Andre and Loic Duval both failed to set a time in the 60-minute practice.
There is one more hour-long practice session on Saturday morning ahead of qualifying.
Pos Driver Class/Team/Car Time
1. Capello/McNish P1 Audi 1:42.801s
2. Panis/Lapierre/Sarrazin P1 ORECA Peugeot 1:43.152s
3. Fernandez/Primat/Mucke P1 Aston Martin 1:44.905s
4. Mansell/Mansell/Mansell P1 Beechdean Ginetta 1:45.111s
5. Prost/Jani P1 Rebellion Lola 1:45.808s
6. Ragues/Mailleux/Ickx P1 Signature Aston 1:47.264s
7. Amaral/Pla/Hughes P2 Quifel Ginetta 1:47.732s
8. Leventis/Watts/Kane P2 Strakka HPD 1:47.743s
9. Hein/Moreau P2 Oak Pescarolo 1:48.840s
10. Ojjeh/Greaves/Ebbesvik P2 Bruich. Ginetta 1:48.998s
11. Erdos/Newton/Wallace P2 RML Lola 1:50.050s
12. Salini/Salini/Gommendy P2 WR-Zytek 1:50.678s
13. Lahaye/Nicolet P2 Oak Pescarolo 1:51.355s
14. Cioci/Perazzini/Pirri P2 Racing Box Lola 1:51.365s
15. Geri/Piccini/Piccini P2 Racing Box Lola 1:51.937s
16. Toulemonde/Zollinger/Zampatti LC Formula Le Mans 1:54.027s
17. Frey/Meichtry/Dueck P2 Race Perf. Radical 1:54.461s
18. Stirling/Hines/Piscopo LC Formula Le Mans 1:55.004s
19. Zacchia/Moro/Kaufmann LC Formula Le Mans 1:55.190s
20. Kraihamer/de Crem/Delhez LC Formula Le Mans 1:55.345s
21. Schell/Metz/da Rocha P2 Pegasus Courage 1:55.811s
22. Beche/Pillon/Capillaire LC Formula Le Mans 1:56.310s
23. Gardel/Goueslard/Canal GT1 Larbre Saleen 1:56.935s
24. Barlesi/Cicognani/Chalandon LC Formula Le Mans 1:58.076s
25. Lieb/Lietz GT2 Felbermayr Porsche 1:58.713s
26. Companc/Russo GT2 AF Corse Ferrari 1:58.925s
27. Kutemann/Basso/Hartshorne LC Formula Le Mans 1:59.023s
28. Bell/Turner GT2 JMW Aston Martin 1:59.024s
29. Bruni/Melo GT2 AF Cornse Ferrari 1:59.144s
30. Narac/Pilet GT2 IMSA Porsche 1:59.573s
31. Kirkaldy/Mullen GT2 CRS Ferrari 1:59.819s
32. Dumbreck/Coronel/Bleekemolen GT2 Spyker 1:59.843s
33. Ragginger/Ried/Long GT2 Felbermayr Porsche 1:59.890s
34. Holzer/Westbrook GT2 Prospeed Porsche 1:59.947s
35. Fisichella/Vilander/Alesi GT2 AF Corse Ferrari 2:00.241s
36. Muller/Werner GT2 BMW 2:00.285s
37. Ehret/Quaife/Kaffer GT2 CRS Ferrari 2:00.811s
38. Pourtales/Noda/Kennard P2 KSM Lola 2:01.006s
39. Farnbacher/Simonsen GT2 Farnbacher Ferrari 2:01.159s
40. Belicchi/Boullion/Smith P1 Rebellion Lola no time
41. Ayari/Andre/Duval P1 ORECA no time