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Lopez, Toyota Set The Pace In FP2 At Monza

Trouble for Alpine, DragonSpeed, RTN, Iron Lynx and Inception Racing

Toyota and Jose Maria Lopez once again set the pace in Free Practice 2 for the FIA WEC runners this morning at Monza.

The Argentine’s time in the #7 during FP2 proved to be significantly faster than the best tour from Friday afternoon, as the teams and drivers get up to speed at the Italian circuit. A 1:36.864 was the pace-setting lap, compared with a 1:38.401 from FP1.

After Toyota finished up 1-2 in FP1, Alpine and the #708 Glickenhaus 007 split the two GR010s on this occasion. The second best time was set by Nicolas Lapierre, a 1:37.591 in the Alpine A480.

Unfortunately, the French team has had to spring into action since the end of the session, as an incident on the cool-down lap caused damage to the front and rear. Negrao was at the wheel for the end of the session, and was hit in the rear on the entry to Ascari by Claudio Schiavoni’s #60 Iron Lynx Ferrari, sending him into Henrik Hedman’s DragonSpeed ORECA and into the barriers. The damage to all three cars is understood to be repairable.

The three cars in question though, were not the only cars to hit trouble in the session. The #7 Toyota suffered a right-rear puncture in the closing stages, the Racing Team Nederland ORECA Frits van Eerd had an off at Ascari into the gravel and the Ferrari fielded by WEC newcomer Inception Racing had a big off, also at Ascari.

Brendan Iribe was behind the wheel of the 488 at the time and went into the wall backwards. The car has suffered severe damage which the team is attempting to repair. At this stage, DSC believes the team is also working on sourcing a new car from Michelotto should it need one.

Back to the timesheets, the top three in the session was completed by the No. 708 Glickenhaus driven by Olivier Pla, the Frenchman on his first weekend racing with the team, setting a 1:37.591.

The #8 Toyota was fourth in the Hypercar class, with a time almost nine-tenths off the ultimate pace.

In LMP2, the Racing Team Nederland ORECA ran fastest, Nyck de Vries setting a 1:38.545, a tenth faster than Filipe Albuquerque in the #22 United ORECA which set the best time in the opening practice. The #38 JOTA ended up third after Anthony Davidson’s best effort put him 0.354 off the RTN example.

In the GTE ranks, after Ferrari ended up 1-2 in FP1 the #92 Porsche topped the times in Pro. Kevin Estre in the #92 beating out Alessandro Pier Guidi’s #51 AF Corse by more than six tenths with a 1:45.590.

AF Corse did however top Am, Francesco Castellacci the quickest in the class after a 1:46.737. It was incredibly tight in Am, with the top three within a tenth and the top four all Ferraris and within a second. The best from the other marques was TF Sport, which ended the session fifth, two tenths off.

Next on the schedule is FP3 at 14:00 local time in Italy.


Image courtesy of Toyota/James Moy