- Marius Hecker/AdrenalMedia.com

Toyota claim pole for Le Mans 2020 as Kobayashi comes close to record time

The Japanese driver lost his final lap due to a track limits infringement whilst Porsche took top spot in both GTE classes.

Kamui Kobayashi was fastest in the new Hyperpole qualifying format to take Toyota's third consecutive pole position at Le Mans.

A timed session yesterday afternoon whittled each class down to six cars, meaning this morning's Hyperpole shootout had only 24 cars out on track allowing all drivers to find space to set their best time.

The Japanese driver would come close to breaking his own lap record in the #7 Toyota, only to be stripped of his time during the final sector as a result of abusing track limits.

However, his stellar time of 3m15.267s would still be enough to claim top spot, despite close competition from American Gustavo Menezes at the helm of the #1 Rebellion who set a time only five tenths slower than pole.

Marius Hecker/AdrenalMedia.com

Marius Hecker/AdrenalMedia.com

In LMP2 it was ex-F1 driver Paul Di Resta who set the fastest time in class, a 3m24.528s time for the #22 United Autosports Oreca would be most closely challenged by two-time Formula E champion Jean-Eric Vergne.

The Frenchman could only manage a 3m24.860s in the #26 G-Drive Oreca, a time 0.332s slower than his British rival. Fellow FE driver Nyck de Vries was lucky to recover from an early spin to go third in the #29 Racing Team Nederland Oreca.

Porsche would take pole in both the GTE Pro and Am, with Gianmaria Bruni setting a 3m50.874s in the #91 Porsche to go quickest in the Pro category.

The Italian driver would beat Alessandro Pier Guidi in the No.51 AF Corse Ferrari to top spot, and with Nicki Thiim third in the No.95 Aston Martin Vantage, the top three drivers were separated by less than four tenths around the 13.629km circuit.

Marius Hecker/AdrenalMedia.com

Marius Hecker/AdrenalMedia.com

The surprise of the session came from Come Ledogar of the No.61 Luzisch Racing Ferrari and Matt Campbell in the No.77 Dempsey-Proton Porsche who both split the Pro field.

Ledogar's 3:51.266s handed him pole in the Am class but was a sensational 0.392s off the Pro pole, with Porsche junior Campbell around half a tenth further back.

Marius Hecker/AdrenalMedia.com

Marius Hecker/AdrenalMedia.com

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