Paul-Loup Chatin laid down the gauntlet in the second and final Free Practice session for the ELMS teams at Paul Ricard this morning. The Frenchman beat Anders Fjordbach’s LMP2 record-setting 1:40.404 lap of the circuit with a 1:40.336 driving IDEC Sport’s #28 ORECA 07.
Chatin’s time came in the first half of the session and remained unbeaten throughout the remainder of the 90-minutes of running.
The #27 Cool Racing ORECA came closest, Nicolas Lapierre setting a 1:40.770 to go second in what was eventually a 1-2-3-4-5 for ORECA, DragonSpeed and the #21 Algarve Pro 07s finishing up third and fourth respectively, ahead of the G-Drive Racing Aurus 01 (a re-badged ORECA) that slotted in fifth.
The fastest Ligier ended up sixth, United Autosports’ #22 JS P217 managing a 1:41.943 from Paul Di Resta.
In the LMP2 class, it was close in the final times, with the top eight within a second of one another. Quickest this time was the Realteam Racing Norma of David Droux, which set a 1:51.449. Oregon Team’s Norma slotted in second late in the session, ahead of Inter Europol Competition’s #13 JS P3 that finished up third.
Eurointernational, after its dramas yesterday, is now using Ligier JS P3 Chassis #001 as its #11 entry, which was the original car tested by Pierre Fillon at Estoril during the car’s development. Mikkel Jensen set the car’s best time, a 1:51.500, to go fourth.
GTE was once again led by Porsche teams, though the #88 Kessel Racing Ferrari 488 managed to crack the top three.
The best time was a 1:53.473 from Thomas Preining in the #88 Proton Porsche, ahead of the #77 Dempsey Proton example. The #88 Kessel 488’s third-place time was a 1:54.070.
Next up for the ELMS teams is Qualifying at 12:55.