Audi will start the first race of the new FIA WEC season with both cars on the front row, as the #7 car of Andre Lotterer and Marcel Fassler secured pole position at a damp Silverstone.

On a drying track, a stunning laptime of 1m53.705s from Lotterer in the first part of the session catapulted the #7 R18 e-tron quattro - which had struggled for pace in comparison to Porsche during Friday practice - to the top of the timesheets.

Taking over at the halfway stage, Fassler managed to nudge down the #7 car's average to a 1m53.204s to claim an unlikely pole, just 0.104s up on the #8 machine of Loic Duval and Lucas di Grassi.

The Brazilian set the fastest time of the session, a 1m52.911s, and looked set to improve by enough to grab pole before running across the grass on his last flying lap at Club corner.

Reigning champions Mark Webber and Brendon Hartley were forced to be content with third with an average time of 1m54.150s in the #1 919 Hybrid, just under a second behind the leading Audi.

The sister #2 car of Neel Jani and Romain Dumas was close behind on a 1m54.299s, easily clear of the Toyotas, which struggled badly for pace in the tricky conditions after a promising showing in practice.

The #6 TS050 Hybrid (driven by Mike Conway and Stephane Sarrazin) will start fifth, one place ahead of the #5 of Anthony Davidson and Kazuki Nakajima.

Honours in the LMP1-L category went to the #12 Rebellion Racing car of Nick Heidfeld and Nelson Piquet Jr, the sister #13 car failing to complete the session.

G-Drive takes LMP2 pole

In the LMP2 class, it was the reigning champion G-Drive squad that ended qualifying on top, as Rene Rast and Roman Rusinov combined to produce an average time of 2m08.479s in the #26 Oreca.

It was Pipo Derani in the ESM-run Ligier who set the best time in class, a 2m07.315s, but the team was demoted to second on an average of 2m09.632s once Chris Cumming took the wheel of the #31 car.

Third was the #43 RGR Sport by Morand (Filipe Albuquerque/Ricardo Gonzalez), ahead of the #37 BR01 (Vitaly Petrov/Viktor Shaitar) and the #45 Manor (Matt Rao/Richard Bradley).

Ferrari on top in GTE Pro

As expected, the two AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTEs proved the cars to beat in the GTE Pro class, the #71 machine of Davide Rigon and Sam Bird topping the times with a combined 2m12.440s.

The #51 of James Calado had been faster in the opening runs, but teammate Gianmaria Bruni failed to complete a lap in the second segment, relegating the duo to the back of the grid.

That allowed the #77 Dempsey-Proton Porsche (Richard Lietz/Michael Christiansen) to grab second in class, albeit 1.4s down on the #71, with the two Ford GTs taking third and fourth places, the #66 of Stefan Mucke and Olivier Pla ahead.

In GTE-Am, it was the #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Porsche of Klaus Bachler and Khalid Al-Qubaisi that set the pace, some two seconds ahead of the #78 KCMG Porsche. 


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