#5 Porsche Hypercar

WEC News: Porsche wins Hypercar pole in Qatar

Matt Campbell in the No.5 Porsche Penske 963 Hybrid Hypercar took the first-ever Porsche WEC pole position with a stunning 1m39.347s lap in the dying seconds of a thrilling Hyperpole session this evening in Qatar.

The Australian’s time eclipsed the No.7 Toyota Gazoo Racing entry driven by Nyck de Vries by 0.164s in a session that went right to the checkered flag.

The first ever Hyperpole session outside of the 24 Hours of Le Mans witnessed Porsche’s first WEC top class pole since Bahrain 2017, their last race with the Porsche 919 LMP1 Hybrid.

Qualifying this season follows a new format and, late in the Qatar afternoon, all 19 Hypercars took to the Lusail International Circuit for a 12-minute opening session, from which the top 10 would progress to a Hyperpole shoot-out for the leading grid positions.

The 10-minute Hyperpole session saw a close contest between 10 cars from five different manufacturers.

De Vries’ return to the WEC was memorable as he sealed a front-row start for the Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota GR010 Hybrid Hypercar with a best lap of 1m39.511s.

Third on the grid will be the No.12 Hertz Team JOTA Porsche 963 as Callum Ilott made an excellent WEC debut in the gold liveried customer Porsche Hypercar.

Fourth was the No.50 Ferrari AF Corse 499P of Antonio Fuoco, while the Kevin Estre driven No.6 Porsche Penske 963 Hybrid Hypercar claimed a fifth placed start.

The remaining five places on the grid are made up of: 6th No.93 Peugeot; 7th No.2 Cadillac; 8th No.51 Ferrari AF Corse; 9th No.38 Hertz Team JOTA Porsche; 10th No.94 Peugeot

Grid Slots: 11 to 19 will be set as: 11th No.8 Toyota; 12th No.83 AF Corse; 13th No.99 Proton; 14th No.36 Alpine; 15th No.15 WRT BMW; 16th No.20 WRT BMW; 17th No.35 Alpine; 18th No.63 Lamborghini; 19th Isotta Fraschini

Corvette Clinches LMGT3 Pole

TF Sport run #81 Corvette driven by Tom van Rompuy took first ever LMGT3 pole position by setting a pole lap of 1:54.372.

VAN ROMPUY Tom (bel), TF Sport, Corvette Z06 GT3.R, portrait during the Qatar Airways Qatar 1812 KM, 1st round of the 2024 FIA World Endurance Championship, from February 29 to March 02, 2024 on the Losail International Circuit in Lusail, Qatar – Photo Marius Hecker / DPPI

Porsche went second-fastest as Aliaksandr Malykhin in #92 Manthey PureRxing machine set time in Hyperpole that was 0.8s adrift of the pole.

#54 Vista AF Corse Ferrari 296 was third as Thomas Flohr qualified with his best lap that being just 0.003s off the second-placed Porsche.

Fourth is the #777 D’Station Aston Martin as Clement Mateu qualified Japanese entered Vantage on his WEC debut.

Aston Martin was fifth as well with Ian James, who was quickest in the initial qualifying session, ending fifth on a 1m55.320s lap in the Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage.

“It’s a good thing this is on the screens because I otherwise I wouldn’t believe it!” He said after the session. “It’s my first qualifying session in WEC. We’ve worked really hard this week to improve the car and improve ourselves. The team did a mega job, as did the guys at Corvette and Pratt Miller. In the end, we made it all work so this is a team effort. I could put a really good lap together, and I’m really amazed with this result.

“The first lap was really slow and then I was building up. I got another GT car ahead of me on the third lap so I had to back off again to go again. So I had two laps to do it and made it work to put it all together. So I’m very happy.”

WEC Qatar Qualifying Results

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