Rinat Salikhov put the #333 Rinaldi Racing Ferrari on top in the opening session of this weekend's Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup event at Circuit Paul Ricard, kicking off a busy day of running at the French venue.
The Russian driver posted a best lap of 1m55.972s, edging out the Tempesta Racing Ferrari of Chris Buncombe by just 0.009s. The #52 AF Corse Ferrari was third, completing a top-three lockout for the Italian brand.
The session ran without interruption until a red flag in the final few moments, which brought proceedings to an early conclusion. This was caused by a collision between the #52 Ferrari and the #31 Team Parker Racing Bentley, which left the latter car stranded at turn 1.
The first full-field session will take place at 13.10 when free practice gets underway for the 49-car field. Later, pre-qualifying is scheduled for a 17.00 start, with both sessions set to run for 90 minutes.
Today's on-track action sets the scene for an even busier Saturday at Circuit Paul Ricard, with qualifying kicking off the day at 10.30. This will establish the grid for the main event, a 1,000km race that begins at 18.00 and runs into the night.
All of Saturday's action will be streamed live on the Blancpain GT Series website and across the championship's social media channels.