Photo: Porsche

FIA WEC: Porsche sweep front row at COTA

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Porsche LMP Team swept the front row for Saturday’s Six Hours of COTA at the Circuit of the Americas, with the No. 1 Porsche 919 Hybrid of Nick Tandy, André Lotterer, and Neel Jani grabbing pole from the sister No. 2 entry for Earl Bamber, Timo Bernhard, and Brendon Hartley.

However, the result did not come without drama. Tandy’s initial time in the No. 1 machine was disallowed after he exceeded track limits on his run. As a result, Tandy went for broke on his last run, and his time of 1:44.827 was ultimately good enough to pip Bamber in the sister No. 2 entry.

Kaz Nakajima, in the No. 8 Toyota TS050 Hybrid for Toyota Gazoo Racing, qualified a somewhat disappointing third after he and teammates Sébastien Buemi and Stéphane Sarrazin led Free Practice 3 earlier in the day. Of note: Saarazin is filling in for the regular driver Anthony Davidson, who is missing this weekend’s race due to personal reasons.

In LMP2, pole went to the No. 36 Signatech Alpine Matmut Alpine A470 Gibson, in the hands of Nico Lapierre, Andre Negrao, and Gustavo Menezes. This is also the second consecutive pole for the No. 36 team.

Second went to the No. 13 Vaillante Rebellion Oreca 07 Gibson of Mathias Beche, David Heinemeier Hansson, and Nelson Piquet Jr. The No. 38 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca will start third in the hands of Ho-Pin Tung, Oliver Jarvis, and Thomas Laurent.

In GTE-Pro, the No. 71 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE will lead the field to green, with Sam Bird sharing duties with Davide Rigon.

Second was the No. 67 Ford GT from Ford Chip Ganassi Racing entry, with Harry Tincknell and Andy Priaulx driving, with third going to the N0. 95 Aston Martin Racing pair of Marco Sørensen and Nicki Thiim.

And in GTE-Am, pole went the No. 98 Aston Martin Vantage, with Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy, and Mathias Lauda at the helm for Aston Martin Racing. Second went to the No. 54 Spirit of Race Ferrari 488 GTE, in the hands of Thomas Flor, Miguel Molina, and Francesco Castellacci, while third went to the Clearwater Racing No. 61 Ferrari 488 GTE of Matt Griffin, Keita Sawa, Weng Sun Mok.

Saturday’s six-hour race begins at 1:00 p.m. ET.

QUALIFYING RESULTS: Overall, LMP1/LMP2, GTE-Pro/GTE-Am

Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

Extreme E drivers Andretti
Extreme E
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The Extreme E team formed by Andretti Autosport and United Autosports named Catie Munnings and Timmy Hansen as its drivers Monday for the series’ inaugural 2021 season.

Munnings is a successful veteran of rally series. Hansen is a past winner and champion in the World Rallycross Championship.

They both will race in the environmentally conscious electric SUV series that will hold events in five areas around the world that are threatened by climate change. Chip Ganassi Racing and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton also are fielding cars in Extreme E, which will feature male and female co-drivers on every team.

Catie Munnings

“I’m so excited to join Andretti United Extreme E,” Munnings said in a release. ““I was really intrigued when I first heard about Extreme E, I just knew I had to be involved. The male / female racing partnership is a fantastic and exciting new concept. The season has incredible locations and the racing will be very exciting. It will be a new challenge for the teams and drivers, and I’m so thrilled to be working with such a strong team.

“The championship is a really innovative concept, it’s combining motorsport and science and will produce an important legacy in each race location. Bringing the platform that motorsport has in line with the awareness that the planet needs right now is awesome and a really important message.”

Timmy Hansen

Said Hansen: “Going into the Extreme E will be a new chapter in my career, one that I am extremely excited about. It is something brand new, not only for me, but the whole of motorsport. The format is something

we’ve never seen before. I’m also delighted to be able to carry the message of something bigger – talking about the environment and doing something good for the world – that’s something that really drives me. It’s going to be a big adventure in life to see these locations and I’m going to do my best in carrying this responsibility and hopefully making people aware of the challenges we have in the world, together with our passion for racing.”