Andreas Simonsen topped the timesheets at the end of the Blancpain Endurance Series Pre Qualifying practice session. The Black Falcon driver was quickest on a circuit that was drying after the showers that hit Free Practice earlier today.
It had stopped raining when the session got underway and as the sun began to break through the clouds the track conditions improved. With just under half an hour remaining in the session it was dry enough for slicks and the hunt for the fastest time began, with Joe Osborne and Alex Buncombe getting their cars to the front.
Laurens Vanthoor went quickest with 15 minutes left in the session, but a couple of minutes later his time was beaten by Alvaro Parente and then Nick Catsburg. The Dutchman was the first to break into the 2:03s and the No. 12 TDS Racing BMW Z4 GT3 remained on top until Andreas Simonsen went even faster with just 2.5 minutes left.
Vanthoor’s team mate Cesar Ramos pushed hard to put the No. 1 Belgian Audi Club Team WRT on top, but despite two purple sector times he was unable to go quicker than the No. 19 Mercedes. On his last attempt Ramos put in another fastest sector time, before spinning off and returning to the pit.
The Black Falcon Mercedes escaped damage in the last minute of Pre Qualifying. Te No. 888 Triple Eight Racing BMW Z4 GT3 spun and nearly collected the Mercedes, but Simonsen managed to brake just in time and could avoid running into the BMW.
As the checkered flag was out already Christopher Mies moved the No. 3 Audi into second place, just 0.033s behind Simonsen. The No. 1 Audi finished third fastest.
RESULT: Pre Qualifying