Peugeot 908 HDi’s continue showing strong pace in Sebring practice.


For the second straight session, Team Peugeot Total’s No. 08 Peugeot 908 HDi FAP was the quickest car in practice for the 58th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Fresh from Florida. Nic Minassian turned in the fastest lap around 3.7-mile, 17-turn Sebring International Raceway at 1:45.371. Minassian is driving with Pedro Lamy and Sebastien Bourdias, who was quickest in the morning practice for the opening round of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón.

The 908 HDi is a new car – or at least a new tub. The crew replaced the monocoque overnight after discovering a small crack in the flooring during a routine maintenance inspection.

Minassian was 0.808 seconds clear of fellow Peugeot pilot Alexander Wurz, who turned a lap of 1:46.539. Wurz and teammate Marc Gene won the 24 Hours of Le Mans last year and are teaming with Anthony Davidson at Sebring.

Emanuele Pirro was 0.914 seconds behind the leading Peugeot in Drayson Racing’s Judd-powered Lola B09/60 that he will drive with Paul Drayson and Jonny Cocker. The Italian’s best lap was a 1:46.645.

After Aston Martin Racing’s Adrian Fernandez (fourth overall), Muscle Milk Team Cytosport’s Porsche RS Spyder sat fifth and first in LMP2. Sascha Maassen, driving with Greg Pickett and Klaus Graf, turned a lap of 1:49.894.

Gunnar Jeannette was the quickest driver in the new LMP Challenge class with a lap of 1:56.118 in Green Earth Team Gunnar’s ORECA FLM09 that he will share with Christian Zugel and Elton Julian.

Jeannette was 0.482 seconds quicker than JR Hildebrand in the Genoa Racing prototype that he will drive with Andy Wallace and Tom Sutherland.

In GT2, BMW Rahal Letterman Racing Team’s two BMW M3s were fastest. Dirk Werner’s lap of 2:01.256 was good enough for a 0.551-second gap back to Joey Hand. Werner is driving with Bill Auberlen and Tommy Milner. Hand is with Dirk Mueller and Andy Priaulx.

Oliver Gavin sat third in class for Corvette Racing. His best lap was a 2:01.852 in the Corvette C6.R that he will drive with Olivier Beretta and Emmanuel Collard.

Lawson Aschenbach went fastest in GT Challenge for Velox Motorsports in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car that he will drive with Jerry Vento and Shane Lewis. Aschenbach was 0.574 seconds better than Andy Pilgrim in the GMG Porsche; he will team with James Sofronas and Bret Curtis.

The next practice is the 7:15 p.m. night session, lasting until 9 p.m.

Courtesy ALMS © RIF