Audis on top in Sebring warmup Audi’s two new R15 TDI prototypes sat 1-2 at the end of Saturday morning’s warmup for the 57th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Fresh from Florida. The German marque can only hope that the race ends the same way.
Allan McNish set the fastest time of the 25-minute session in the diesel-powered prototype that he is sharing with fellow reigning 24 Hours of Le Mans winners Dindo Capello and Tom Kristensen. The Scotsman’s lap of 1:45.800 (125.898 mph) gave him a 1.045-second advantage over Mike Rockenfeller in the sister Audi that he will drive with defending Series P1 champions Lucas Luhr and Marco Werner.
The first of Peugeot’s diesel-powered 908 HDi coupes sat third at 1:47.294 (124.145 mph). Pedro Lamy, Nic Minassian and Christian Klien will drive that entry. The second Peugeot of Sebastien Bourdais, Franck Montagny and Stephane Sarrazin did not make the warmup while the crew worked on a minor hydraulic issue but will be fine for the start of the race.
Dyson Racing’s Marino Franchitti went quickest in P2 in one of its Mazda-powered Lola B09/86. Another Scottish star, Franchitti turned a fast lap of 1:52.384 (118.522 mph) in the coupe that he will share with Butch Leitzinger and Ben Devlin. Franchitti was 1.398 seconds better than the sister car of Chris Dyson, Guy Smith and Andy Lally.
The Lowe’s Fernandez Racing Acura ARX-01b of Adrian Fernandez and Luis Diaz was third in class at 1:55.196 (115.629 mph).
In GT1, Jan Magnussen was quickest in class in one of Corvette Racing’s Corvette C6.R at 1:59.634 (111.340 mph). He will drive with fellow defending race winner Johnny O’Connell and newcomer Antonio Garcia. The sister Corvette of Olivier Beretta, Oliver Gavin and Marcel Fässler was 1.837 seconds behind.
Two Porsches held the top two spots in GT2. Farnbacher Loles Racing’s Dirk Werner, the class pole-winner, was quickest in the warmup at 2:03.292 (108.036 mph) in the 911 GT3 RSR that he will drive with Wolf Henzler and Richard Lietz.
Werner was 1.016 seconds ahead of the Flying Lizard Motorsports Porsche of Jörg Bergmeister, Patrick Long and Marc Lieb. The Panoz Team PTG Panoz Esperante GTLM of Dominik Farnbacher and Ian James sat third in class at 2:04.479 (107.006 mph).
The green flag for the start of the 2009 American Le Mans Series is 10:30 a.m. ET.
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