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European Le Mans Series

Beche Tops Paul Ricard FP2 for TDS Racing

Mathias Beche goes fastest in ELMS FP2 at Paul Ricard…

Photo: Vision Sport Agency

Photo: Vision Sport Agency

Mathias Beche went fastest in Saturday morning’s Free Practice 2 session for the Four Hours of Le Castellet, although the Thiriet by TDS Racing driver could not match Friday’s fastest time.

Beche, who is joined by Pierre Thiriet and LMP1 regular Mike Conway in the No. 46 Oreca 05 Nissan this weekend, lapped the Paul Ricard circuit with a 1:48.505.

However, this wasn’t enough to beat Nicolas Lapierre’s time from Friday’s Free Practice 1 session, in which the DragonSpeed driver went 0.030 seconds quicker.

In an impressive comeback drive, Eurasia Motorsport came second in the session, with Tristan Gommendy just 0.260 seconds down on the leader.

This comes after the No. 33 Oreca Nissan was taken out of Friday’s running following a heavy crash for Pu Jun Jin in the Bronze Test. Jun Jin will not take any further part in the weekend, and so Gommendy and Nico Pieter de Bruijn will complete the weekend as a twosome.

Olivier Pla went third-fastest this morning for Krohn Racing, followed by Kevin Ceccon and Paul Loup Chatin in the Murphy Prototypes and Panis Barthez Competition cars, respectively.

Alex Brundle was quickest in LMP3 for United Autosports with a 1:54.869 from the championship leader. This wasn’t enough to beat Nigel Moore’s time from yesterday’s running though, and the Tockwith Motorsports driver came fifth this morning.

Ross Kaiser was second in the all-Ligier JS P3 Nissan for the 360 Racing crew, while Alexandre Cougnaud finished the session in third with the M.Racing – YMR team.

Meanwhile, Marco Cioci and AF Corse set the pace in GTE. He lapped the circuit in 1:57.406 in his No. 51 Ferrari F458 Italia; 0.139 seconds clear of Darren Turner’s Aston Martin V8 Vantage GTE.

Andrea Bertolini put another Ferrari into third position, with the JMW Motorsports driver setting a time four-tenths down on the class leader.

Qualifying is scheduled for 12:50 p.m. local time and can be streamed on the series’ Dailymotion and YouTube channels.

RESULTS: Free Practice 2

Jake Kilshaw is a UK-based journalist. He is a graduate of Politics and International Relations.

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