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Toyota Tops Opening Test Session at Prologue

Jose Maria Lopez quickest in opening test session at Prologue…

Photo: James Moy/Toyota

Jose Maria Lopez led the way in the opening test session for FIA World Endurance Championship competitors at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, in a Toyota Gazoo Racing 1-2 at the Prologue.

Lopez reeled off a 1:29.991 in his updated No. 7 Toyota TS050 Hybrid to go fastest in the four-hour session, despite a late improvement by defending World Champion Sebastien Buemi in the sister No. 8 Toyota.

Buemi’s 1:30.258 lap time, set in the final 30 minutes, was 0.267 seconds slower than Lopez’s time.

The pair of Rebellion R13 Gibsons were third and fourth quickest, led by the No. 3 entry of Gustavo Menezes, who was 1.612 seconds slower than the pace-setting Toyota.

Only one of the two Team LNT-entered Ginetta G60-LT P1 AERs took to the track  due to a scrutineering-related issue, with the No. 6 car completing only 15 laps in the hands of Stephane Sarrazin, who is one of eight drivers slated to test with the British team.

LMP2 was led by the No. 32 United Autosports Oreca 07 Gibson of Paul Di Resta, who recorded a 1:33.344 in the closing minutes of the session.

It marked the Anglo-American team’s first running with the Oreca after its late switch from a planned Ligier JS P217 Gibson entry.

AF Corse, meanwhile, topped the time charts in GTE-Pro with the pair of its Ferrari 488 GTEs, led by the No. 51 car Alessandro Pier Guidi, with the two Team Project 1 Porsche 911 RSRs quickest in GTE-Am.

It came despite an accident for the No. 67 Porsche of David Heinemeier Hansson in Turn 9 that brought out the session’s only red flag.

Four additional hours of track time is on tap for this evening starting at 5 p.m. local time.

RESULTS: Test Session 1

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John

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