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Kobayashi Leads Incident-Filled FP2 in Bahrain

No. 7 Toyota GR010 Hybrid quickest as Buemi encounters incident with GTE-Am Ferrari…

Photo: Jose Bispo

Kamui Kobayashi led the way in an incident-filled second Free Practice session for Saturday’s 6 Hours of Bahrain that saw an accident for the No. 8 Toyota GR010 Hybrid of Sebastien Buemi.

The Hypercar class championship leader recorded a best lap of 1:49.063 early in the 90-minute session, which was interrupted three times due to various incidents.

It was 0.030 seconds quicker than the No. 8 Toyota of Brendon Hartley.

The No. 36 Signatech Alpine A480 Gibson was unable to crack the 1:50 barrier, with Nico Lapierre setting a 1:50.194 that was marginally quicker than Tom Blomqvist’s 1:50.199 lap time in the LMP2 pace-setting No. 28 JOTA Oreca 07 Gibson.

The session saw a Full Course Yellow early for debris followed by a second FCY for the No. 70 Realteam Oreca of Norman Nato, who stopped in Turn 14.

It was followed by an accident between the No. 8 Toyota of Buemi and the No. 85 Iron Lynx Ferrari 488 GTE Evo of Sarah Bovy in Turn 1 that brought out a red flag.

Buemi limped his Toyota back to the pit lane with a damaged left-front (pictured above) while Bovy’s GTE-Am class Ferrari sustained bodywork damage as well.

The session restarted with 15 minutes left on the clock.

Four cars: the No. 7 Toyota, No. 28 JOTA Oreca, No. 51 AF Corse Ferrari and No. 56 Team Project 1 Porsche 911 RSR-19 were all reported to the stewards for not respecting the red flag procedures.

Multiple team managers were also ordered to race control. 

GTE-Pro was again led by the pair of factory Porsches, with Kevin Estre going quickest in the No. 92 with a 1:56.411 lap time.

The quickest Ferrari — the No. 51 AF Corse example — was 2.906 seconds off the pace as the Italian manufacturer continued its struggles amid a pre-event Balance of Performance change.

Matteo Cairoli again led the way in GTE-Am in the No. 56 Project 1 Porsche.

A final 60-minute FP3 is on tap for 12:45 p.m. local time followed by qualifying in the afternoon.

RESULTS: Free Practice 2

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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