The GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS finale at Circuit Paul Ricard is officially underway following this evening's Bronze Test.
Beginning in darkness a little after 18.30 CET, the hour-long session featured 11 cars and ran without incident from start to finish. Rinaldi Racing emerged on top of the times, with the #95 Ferrari quickest in the hands of Manuel Lauck. The German driver posted a 1m58.336s lap in what was the car's first appearance of 2020.
Sky Tempesta Racing made it a Ferrari one-two thanks to Chris Froggatt, who was just 0.098s shy of Lauck's benchmark. The #74 RAM Racing Mercedes-AMG and AF Corse's #52 Ferrari were next on the timing screens.
This weekend's race will decide the outcome of the Endurance Cup and the combined GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS championships. Several teams' and drivers' titles remain up for grabs, including each of the overall classifications. It also represents the 50th race for the successful Endurance Cup format, which debuted at Monza in 2011.
The final entry list has been confirmed ahead of a hectic Saturday, with the grid remaining at 40 cars. The #51 AF Corse Ferrari now includes Tom Blomqvist in place of Sam Bird, while the sister #52 car has Maurizio Mediani and Lorenzo Bontempelli alongside full-season driver Louis Machiels.
Both of the competing Am Cup squads have also finalised their line-ups. Sainteloc Racing will field returnees Michael Blanchemain and Fabien Michal alongside series newcomer Christophe Hamon, forming an all-French crew in the #26 Audi. CMR also has a trio of Frenchmen competing on home turf, with Stephane Tribaudini, Philippe Chatelet and Nicolas Misslin sharing the #108 Bentley.
This weekend's support action comes from the Lamborghini Super Trofeo, Formula Renault Eurocup, FFSA Championnat de France F4 and the GT4 European Series, with the latter set to complete its season under the lights on Saturday evening. With the exception of the F4 category, all will wrap up their championships at Circuit Paul Ricard.
Live coverage of the GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS action begins on Saturday morning, with a 90-minute free practice kicking off at 08.00 CET. Pre-qualifying will run from 13.15 to 14.45, while the main qualifying session getting underway at 17.20.
The season-ending race is scheduled to go green at 11.45 CET and will run for 1000km or a maximum of six hours. It will conclude shortly after sunset at Circuit Paul Ricard, bringing the curtain down on the 2020 campaign.