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Gulf 12H

Kessel Tops Free Practice 1 in Abu Dhabi

Kessel Racing Ferrari tops Free Practice 1 at Yas Marina Circuit…

Photo: John Dagys

Photo: John Dagys

Kessel Racing was quickest in Wednesday’s opening Free Practice session for the fifth running of the Gulf 12 Hours.

The No. 65 Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 of Alexis De Bernardi, Niki Cadei and MotoGP star Loris Capirossi, in his four-wheeled endurance debut, topped the time charts with a 2:10.465 lap time.

It was 0.229 seconds quicker than the No. 1 Abu Dhabi by Black Falcon Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 of Jeroen Bleekmolen, Maro Engel and Khaled Al Qubaisi in second.

The No. 55 AF Corse Ferrari was third quickest, followed by the No. 11 Kessel entry in fourth, and another Ferrari, the No. 51 AF Corse car, completing the top-five.

Black Falcon’s sister No. 2 Merc was sixth, followed by the No. 44 Oman Racing Team Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3, which makes its international debut this weekend.

The No. 20 MRS-GT Racing Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car, featuring Americans Charles Espenlaub and Charlie Putman, led the way in the Porsche Cup class.

No major incidents were reported in the 1 hour and 15 minute session.

Free Practice 2 gets underway at 7 p.m. local time.

RESULTS: Free Practice 1

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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