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24 Hours of Le Mans: Porsche on Pole After Heavy Rains Disrupt Qualifying

Porsche will start from pole in this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans which kicks off tomorrow at 15:00 hours. The grid layout will use results from the only perfect qualifying session, Q1 from Wednesday night where Porsche set the fastest time with the #2 919 Hybrid car of Neel Jani who had a best time of 3:19.733. The #1 Porsche 919 Hybrid makes it a 1-2 for Porsche on the grid, piloted by Mark Webber, Brendon Hartley and Timo Bernhard.

Q2 was disrupted by heavy rains forcing the drivers to stay out in bid to protect the cars and the drivers. Most teams had already shod on the racing engines and gearboxes. Once the rains stopped, several teams went out to test their wet tires but the times from Q1 remained unchallenged.

Q3 was worse, the session was red flagged for 57 minutes due to heavy rains forcing the stewards to determine the grid positions using results from Q1. That means Toyota will start behind the Porsche cars from the second row, the #6 Toyota TS050 Hybrid will start from P3 while the #5 sister car will start from P4.

Audi will start from fifth and sixth places with two R18s, leading the two LMP1 privateer cars from Rebellion Racing.

[Photos by Rajan Jangda]

In the LMGTE-Pro class, Ford will start from P1 and P2, after setting the fastest times in Q1 with the #68 and #69 Ford Chip Ganassi GT challengers. AF Corse will start from third in this class with the #51 Ferrari 488 GTE, leading two more Ford GTs from Chip Ganassi.

The LMGTE-Am class had a few changes after Q2, the No.88 Abu-Dhabi Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR will start from third, behind Clearwater Racing Ferrari 458 in first and the Aston Martin Racing Vantage V8 in second.

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