Iron Lynx secured a dominant pole position for this evening's Circuit Paul Ricard 1000km thanks to the #71 Ferrari crew of Davide Rigon, Antonio Fuoco and Daniel Serra.
The Italian squad served notice of its pace by taking a one-two in last night's pre-qualifying and backed that performance up today with three strong showings from its trio of drivers. Serra ran in Q1 and set the third-best time, behind the pace-setting Dries Vanthoor (#32 Team WRT Audi) and Klaus Bachler (#54 Dinamic Motorsport Porsche). The Belgian driver posted a 1m53.864s at the wheel of the #32 Audi, 0.244s clear of Bachler and a further tenth ahead of Serra.
Iron Lynx hit the front in Q2 when Rigon delivered a blistering 1m53.423s at the wheel of the #71 Ferrari. This was 0.735s faster than anyone else and firmly established the Italian outfit as favourite for pole. Equally impressive in Q2 was Lorenzo Ferrari, who was second overall at the wheel of the #57 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG. Côme Ledogar kept the Dinamic Porsche in the hunt by finishing third, while Marco Sørensen was a fine sixth in the repaired #95 Beechdean AMR Aston Martin.
Fuoco quickly settled any Q3 nerves by sending the #71 to the top of the times and effectively guaranteeing pole for his crew. The Italian recorded a 1m53.438s, fractionally slower than teammate Rigon but more than three tenths better than his closest competititor. This gave Ferrari a 12th Fanatec Endurance pole – extending what was already a series record – and its first since the visit to Circuit Paul Ricard in 2020.
Dinamic Motorsport took second spot in Q3, which ensured that the #54 Porsche will line up alongside the #71 Ferrari for the start of tonight's long-distance race. Matteo Cairoli was at the wheel in the final session, demonstrating the same pace that his teammates showed in the earlier runs. A Porsche won this event last term and the #54 crew is clearly in the hunt this time around.
The #32 Team WRT Audi will start third having faded after Vanthoor topped Q1. Kelvin Van der Linde was fifth in Q2, while Charles Weerts did not manage a clean lap and was only 17th in Q3. Nevertheless WRT is clearly a contender to win this race, as is its chief overall title rival, Akkodis ASP, which secured fourth with its #88 Mercedes-AMG.
Fifth spot went to the Silver Cup pole-sitter, Team WRT's #30 entry. A solid foundation was laid by Jean-Baptiste Simmenauer (12th in Q1) and Benji Goethe (15th in Q2), while a fantastic P5 for Thomas Neubauer in Q3 secured class pole. The next best Silver Cup car was Emil Frey Racing's #14 Lamborghini, which took 11th overall.
The #63 Emil Frey Racing Lamborghini was in the mix after a disappointing outing at Imola and will start tonight's contest from sixth. The #46 Team WRT Audi was seventh, while Tresor by Car Collection (#12 Audi), Iron Lynx (#51 Ferrari) and Beechdean AMR (#95 Aston Martin) completed the overall top-10.
Inception Racing topped the Gold Cup with its #7 McLaren. Q3 was crucial, with Frederik Schandorff taking P7 overall in the final session after Ollie Millroy and Brendan Iribe had run in Q1 and Q2 respectively. The McLaren will start 18th overall, one place ahead of class rival Winward Racing with its #57 Mercedes-AMG.
Garage 59 ensured that a McLaren also earned the Pro-Am pole and yet again it was a rapid Q3 lap that sealed the deal. Alexander West ran the opening session, followed by Miguel Ramos, before Henrique Chaves delivered a mighty effort to place fourth overall in Q3. This left the #188 machine 29th on the grid for tonight's race, ahead of several strong Pro and Silver Cup line-ups.
Today's race gets underway ay 18:00 CEST and will be steamed live on the GT World YouTube channel, with commentary available in English, French, German and Italian.