Shanghai WEC: Rebellion takes first-ever outright pole

Rebellion Racing scored its first-ever outright FIA World Endurance Championship pole in qualifying at Shanghai, as the Toyotas ended up slowest of the LMP1s.

Gustavo Menezes and Bruno Senna set a combined average of 1m45.892s aboard the solo Rebellion R-13 to beat the two Team LNT Ginettas to the top spot.

It marks the first time a Toyota has failed to score pole in the WEC since Porsche's final LMP1 pole in the 2017 Bahrain 6 Hours.

Menezes led the way during the opening runs with a 1m46.006s before Senna posted the fastest time of the session with a 1m45.778s to give them a 1m45.892s average. 

Senna said: "For the conditions it felt the car was gripping better [than in free practice], but I felt that I still left something on the track today." 

The #6 Ginetta bagged a spot on the front row ahead of the sister #5 car courtesy of Charlie Robertson and Mike Simpson, who trailed the Rebellion by exactly 1.2 seconds.

Robertson was third fastest after the first runs with a 1m46.757s, while Simpson managed a 1m47.427s. 

The second of the Ginettas driven by Egor Orudzhev and Ben Hanley ended up third, less than two hundredths behind their teammates.

Orudzhev set a 1m47.368s before Hanley set a 1m46.850s to give them a 1m47.109s average.

Toyota's top qualifier was the #7 TS050 Hybrid of Mike Conway and Kamui Kobayashi, 1.3s off the pace, ahead of the #8 car of Sebastien Buemi and Brendon Hartley.

Cool Racing Oreca duo Nicolas Lapierre and Antonin Borga topped the LMP2 times with a best time of 1m48.649s, a tenth up on the #37 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca.

The United Autosports ORECA took third in the hands of Filipe Albuquerque and Phil Hanson. 

In GTE Pro, Porsche secured pole with defending champions Kevin Estre and Michael Christensen by a scant margin of just 0.018s ahead of the two works Aston Martins.

Nicki Thiim topped the times after the first runs with a 1m59.708s before Marco Sorensen went three tenths faster with a 1m59.486s on the same set of tyres. 

That gave them a 1m59.597s, which was just one hundredth up on the sister car of Maxime Martin and Alex Lynn. 

The two Ferrari 488 GTE Evos took fourth and fifth positions, the 1m59.687s average from James Calado and Alessandro Pier Guidi putting them four tenths up on the sister car of Davide Rigon and Miguel Molina. 

Matteo Cairoli and Egidio Perfetti ensured a sweep of poles for Porsche by taking the top spot in GTE Am for the Project 1 squad.

Qualifying and the full 4 Hours of Shanghai will be shown live on Motorsport.tv. Check times here.

Prototype results:

Cla # Drivers Car Class Avg Time Gap
1 1 Brazil Bruno Senna
United States Gustavo Menezes
France Norman Nato
Rebellion R13 LMP1 1'45.892
2 6 United Kingdom Charles Robertson
United Kingdom Michael Simpson
United Kingdom Guy Smith
Ginetta G60-LT-P1 LMP1 1'47.092 1.200
3 5 United Kingdom Jordan King
United Kingdom Ben Hanley
Russian Federation Egor Orudzhev
Ginetta G60-LT-P1 LMP1 1'47.109 1.217
4 7 United Kingdom Mike Conway
Japan Kamui Kobayashi
Argentina Jose Maria Lopez
Toyota TS050 Hybrid LMP1 1'47.235 1.343
5 8 Switzerland Sébastien Buemi
Japan Kazuki Nakajima
New Zealand Brendon Hartley
Toyota TS050 Hybrid LMP1 1'48.180 2.288
6 42 France Nicolas Lapierre
Switzerland Antonin Borga
Switzerland Alexandre Coigny
Oreca 07 LMP2 1'48.649 2.757
7 37 China Ho-Pin Tung
France Gabriel Aubry
United Kingdom Will Stevens
Oreca 07 LMP2 1'48.775 2.883
8 22 United Kingdom Philip Hanson
Portugal Filipe Albuquerque
United Kingdom Paul di Resta
Oreca 07 LMP2 1'48.972 3.080
9 33 United States Mark Patterson
Japan Kenta Yamashita
Denmark Anders Fjordbach
Oreca 07 LMP2 1'49.245 3.353
10 38 Mexico Roberto Gonzalez
Portugal Antonio Felix da Costa
United Kingdom Anthony Davidson
Oreca 07 LMP2 1'49.739 3.847
11 47 Italy Roberto Lacorte
Italy Andrea Belicchi
Italy Giorgio Sernagiotto
Dallara P217 LMP2 1'50.496 4.604
12 36 France Thomas Laurent
Brazil Andre Negrao
France Pierre Ragues
Alpine A470 LMP2 1'50.941 5.049
13 29 Netherlands Frits van Eerd
Netherlands Giedo van der Garde
Netherlands Nyck de Vries
Oreca 07 LMP2 1'48.431 2.539

GTE results:

Cla # Drivers Car Class Avg Time Gap
1 92 Denmark Michael Christensen
France Kevin Estre
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE PRO 1'59.579
2 95 Denmark Marco Sorensen
Denmark Nicki Thiim
Aston Martin Vantage AMR LMGTE PRO 1'59.597 0.018
3 97 United Kingdom Alex Lynn
Belgium Maxime Martin
Aston Martin Vantage AMR LMGTE PRO 1'59.607 0.028
4 51 United Kingdom James Calado
Italy Alessandro Pier Guidi
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE PRO 1'59.687 0.108
5 71 Italy Davide Rigon
Spain Miguel Molina
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE PRO 2'00.067 0.488
6 91 Italy Gianmaria Bruni
Austria Richard Lietz
Porsche 911 RSR - 19 LMGTE PRO 2'00.224 0.645
7 56 Norway Egidio Perfetti
Denmark David Heinemeier Hansson
Italy Matteo Cairoli
Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE AM 2'00.824 1.245
8 98 Canada Paul Dalla Lana
United Kingdom Darren Turner
United Kingdom Ross Gunn
Aston Martin Vantage AMR LMGTE AM 2'01.528 1.949
9 77 Germany Christian Ried
Italy Riccardo Pera
Australia Matt Campbell
Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE AM 2'01.655 2.076
10 90 Turkey Salih Yoluc
Ireland Charles Eastwood
United Kingdom Jonathan Adam
Aston Martin Vantage AMR LMGTE AM 2'02.192 2.613
11 57 United States Ben Keating
Netherlands Larry ten Voorde
Netherlands Jeroen Bleekemolen
Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE AM 2'02.228 2.649
12 54 Switzerland Thomas Flohr
Italy Francesco Castellacci
Italy Giancarlo Fisichella
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'02.404 2.825
13 70 Japan Motoaki Ishikawa
Monaco Olivier Beretta
Japan Kei Cozzolino
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'02.602 3.023
14 88 Italy Angelo Negro
New Zealand Will Bamber
Austria Thomas Preining
Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE AM 2'02.714 3.135
15 86 United Kingdom Michael Wainwright
United Kingdom Andrew Watson
United Kingdom Benjamin Barker
Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE AM 2'02.978 3.399
16 83 France François Perrodo
France Emmanuel Collard
Denmark Nicklas Nielsen
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'03.001 3.422
17 78 Monaco Philippe Prette
Monaco Louis Prette
France Vincent Abril
Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE AM 2'03.086 3.507
18 62 United Kingdom Bonamy Grimes
United Kingdom Johnny Mowlem
United Kingdom Charles Hollings
Ferrari 488 GTE EVO LMGTE AM 2'03.239 3.660
shares
comments
Shanghai WEC: Toyota back on top in final practice

Previous article

Shanghai WEC: Toyota back on top in final practice

Next article

Senna: Shanghai race is Rebellion's to lose

Senna: Shanghai race is Rebellion's to lose
Load comments
How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge kept Toyota clear Prime

How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge kept Toyota clear

Despite going stride for stride for pace at Portimao, Alpine’s grandfathered LMP1 couldn’t convert pole position into a sustained victory fight against Toyota. And due to rules and car limitations that are set in stone, the French manufacturer will be searching for solutions in its own battle of endurance.

WEC
Jun 14, 2021
Charting 100 world championship sportscar starts for Toyota Prime

Charting 100 world championship sportscar starts for Toyota

This weekend's Portimao 8 Hours round of the FIA World Endurance Championship marks the 100th world champion prototype start for Toyota. Here are the major milestones on the road to three figures since the earliest low-key days of its entry into the Group C arena nearly 40 years ago.

WEC
Jun 12, 2021
The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing Prime

The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing

Most of the column inches after the World Endurance Championship's opener were centred around the relative pace of the Hypercar class and the LMP2s, but there's another question that needs addressing in order for the new division to have a successful future

WEC
May 7, 2021
How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era Prime

How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era

Amid concerns that the new Hypercar class would be upstaged on debut by the spec LMP2 machines at Spa, Toyota delivered the pole and victory that the vast majority of observers expected. But neither car had a clean run, which gave the grandfathered Alpine LMP1 an unexpected shot at glory.

WEC
May 4, 2021
What to expect from sportscar racing's bold new Hypercar era Prime

What to expect from sportscar racing's bold new Hypercar era

A slim field of three cars will be entered in the Hypercar class for the first round of the World Endurance Championship's post-LMP1 age. But there are plenty of reasons for optimism with the new wave of manufacturer entries and competing class philosophies just around the corner

WEC
Apr 29, 2021
How Aston Martin scaled new heights in the Prodrive era Prime

How Aston Martin scaled new heights in the Prodrive era

The 2021 FIA World Endurance Championship kicks off at Spa this weekend, but for the first time since its 2012 inception there will be no factory-run Aston Martins in the GTE Pro class. That's especially notable because as a works entity, the Prodrive era of Aston Martin Racing that began in 2005 has been a success from the very start.

WEC
Apr 27, 2021
How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname Prime

How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname

Sportscar racing lost one of it's greatest talents 20 years ago today when Bob Wollek was knocked from his bicycle prior to the Sebring 12 Hours. The enigmatic Frenchman never won the Le Mans 24 Hours, but many still remember today why 'Brilliant Bob' became a legend

WEC
Mar 16, 2021
How Ferrari's Hypercar project could bolster Leclerc's legacy Prime

How Ferrari's Hypercar project could bolster Leclerc's legacy

Ferrari's planned return to the top category at the Le Mans 24 Hours has further heightened anticipation for the 2023 race. Few concrete details are currently known, but already it has a high-profile superstar angling for involvement, which would make a refreshing change

WEC
Mar 5, 2021