Sainteloc Racing set the pace in Free Practice

Sainteloc Racing’s Audi R8 LMS dominated the timings in south-west France, claiming the fastest time in Free Practice One before being joined by Team Novadriver to make an all Audi top three in Free Practice Two.

The German manufacturer’s pace lit up the timesheets as FIA GT3 European Championship started its opening weekend of the season in Nogaro.

French pair Gregory Guilvert and Marc Sourd led the way on home soil in the Audi No.16. They set the fastest laps of both timed sessions during the course of Friday’s running.

Audi went on to claim a 1-2-3 in the second session as Sainteloc Racing claimed first and third, while Team Novadriver were able to take second place with the Portuguese pair of Ni Amorium and Cesar Campanico.

Lining up in one of Sainteloc Racing’s Audi R8 LMSs Guilvert recorded the session’s fastest time in the in morning Free Practice One session.

His time of 1:27.833 remained the marker for the field, as only the AF Corse Ferrari 458 Italia of Stefano Gai (ITA) and Michael Lyons (GBR) came close to matching the Audi’s time during the session, and ultimately throughout the day, recording a lap of 1:28.033.

Heico-Gravity-Charouz Team, claimed third and fourth in the morning as their pair of Mercedez-Benz SLS AMGs fell just short of the Ferrari time. The car of Dominik Baumann (AUT) and Maximilian Buhk (DEU) posted a time of 1:28.110 just six laps into the opening session.

The sister car at Hecio-Gravity-Charouz, belonging to Mika Vahamaki (FIN) and Max Nilsson (SWE) was just 0.199 slower round the 3.636km track.

The best of the Lamborghinis was the Rhino’s Leipert Motorsport Gallardo LP600 of Filip Sladecka (SVK) and Gerhard Tweraser (AUT) which set a time of 1:29.300.

Meanwhile flying the flag for Aston Martin the Valmon Racing Team Russia were Thomas Kimber Smith (GBR) and Natalia Freidina (RUS) in the No. 6 DBRS9 produced a best lap time of 1:31.382.