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PWC: Parente edges Long for Long Beach pole

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LONG BEACH, Calif. – Defending Long Beach winner Alvaro Parente has taken the pole position for Sunday’s 50-minute single race of the Pirelli World Challenge season, driving his No. 9 K-PAX Racing McLaren 650S GT3.

Parente uncorked a 1:18.883 lap time around the 1.968-mile street circuit, exactly one tenth clear of sparring partner and California native Patrick Long, driving the No. 58 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.

Parente won this race last year after Johnny O’Connell was moved to second post-race, following an overboost penalty. Parente’s pole time last year was a 1:18.947 to O’Connell’s 1:18.955, but O’Connell passed him early en route to the win on the road.

Bryan Sellers was third in the second of three K-PAX McLarens, with Ferrari driver and St. Petersburg polesitter Daniel Mancinelli fourth and fellow Ferrari driver Alex Riberas fifth.

The pair of Cadillac Racing Cadillac ATS-V.Rs struggled with Michael Cooper ninth and O’Connell only 12th on the grid.

PWC veteran James Sofronas took his No. 14 GMG Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R to the GTA class pole position, good enough for 14th overall.

The pair of RealTime Racing Acura NSX GT3s in their home race qualified 10th and 13th, Peter Kox ahead of Ryan Eversley on this occasion.

Mancinelli, who drew the ire of several competitors at St. Petersburg, speared Tim Pappas’ No. 54 Black Swan Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 at Turn 10 during the session. Pappas resumed but it was another incident where it appeared Mancinelli missed his braking window.

Adderly Fong did not qualify the No. 88 Bentley Team Absolute Bentley Continental GT3 after an accident in the practice session just before qualifying. Fong attempted to pass another car around the outside of Turn 10, but the two collided, which pitched Fong into the wall. The team will need to repair the right side of the car.

The race runs Sunday morning at 10 a.m. PT and local time.

Hamilton tops second Abu Dhabi F1 practice with new track record

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Lewis Hamilton swept to the top of the timesheets in second Formula 1 practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Friday evening, beating Ferrari rival Sebastian Vettel by one-tenth of a second.

Hamilton trailed Vettel through the daytime-run opening practice session, but managed to strike back by recording a new track record at the Yas Marina Circuit for Mercedes.

Hamilton recorded a fastest lap time of 1:37.877 to finish one-tenth of a second clear of Vettel at the checkered flag, appearing to have an edge across a single lap on the ultra-soft tire.

Red Bull threw its hat into the ring as a possible rival for pole through Daniel Ricciardo, who finished the session third-fastest, three-tenths of a second back from Hamilton at the head of the field.

Kimi Raikkonen ended FP2 in fourth place in the sister Ferrari, finishing within half a second of Hamilton, and managed to edge out fellow Finn Valtteri Bottas, who was a further two-tenths back in P5.

Max Verstappen failed to get in a quick flying lap during FP2, ending the session one second down in P6 for Red Bull.

Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon’s tight intra-team fight at Force India continued through FP2 as the pair were separated by just 0.01 seconds, taking seventh and eighth respectively to finish as the leading midfield drivers.

Nico Hulkenberg and Fernando Alonso completed the top 10 for Renault and McLaren, with Felipe Massa following in 11th for Williams on his final Friday appearance in F1.

Massa was fortunate to avoid an accident with Ricciardo during the final 15 minutes of the session after a mix up at the hairpin when the Brazilian tried to get a wider line for the back straight.

Running in Abu Dhabi continues with final practice at Yas Marina on Saturday morning from 5am ET on the NBC Sports app, followed by qualifying at 8am ET on NBCSN.