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WEC: Fuoco claims sensational Sebring pole on Ferrari’s Hypercar debut

  • gb

Antonio Fuoco took the no.50 Ferrari 499P Hypercar to pole position for this Friday’s 1000 Miles of Sebring, the opening event of the 2023 FIA World Endurance Championship season

The Italian’s best lap of 1m45.067s was 0.214s ahead of the second-best driver of the session, Toyota’s Brendon Hartley.

Ferrari’s pole position was also the first time the Italian manufacturer emerged atop the times during the event after Toyota topped all three practice sessions held across Wednesday and Thursday.

By securing the Hypercar class pole position AF Corse became the first team to have scored pole positions in four different FIA WEC classes, having previously won qualifying in LMGTE Pro, LMGTE Am and LMP2.

Kamui Kobayashi rounded out the top three in the no.7 Toyota GR010 Hybrid, with Ferrari AF Corse’s second driver Alessandro Pier Guidi in fourth.

Cadillac’s Alex Lynn went fifth-fastest, setting 1m46.082s aboard the only V-Series.R Hypercar entered in the event. The British racer will be joined on the third row of the grid by the no.6 Porsche Penske 963 that secured sixth with Kevin Estre behind the wheel.

Oliver Jarvis in the No.23 United Autosports Oreca-Gibson took the pole in LMP2 after becoming the only driver to break the 1m50s barrier. 

Sarah Bovy in the Iron Dames Porsche 911 RSR 19 takes a sensational pole position after a tooth-and-nail battle with Ben Keating-driven Chevrolet Corvette C8.R. 

Bovy set a 1m58.949s best to beat Keating by 0.396s in what was her first competitive outing behind the wheel of a Porsche.

The Belgian racer claimed her third WEC career class pole and second in a row, having also been the best qualifier in last year's season-concluding 8 Hours of Bahrain, on that occasion behind the wheel of a Ferrari. It was also Porsche’s first GTE Am pole since the 2021 24 Hours of Le Mans.