The No. 15 BMW M Hybrid V8 during qualifying at Le Mans. (24 Hours of Le Mans Photo)

BMW On Provisional Pole For 24 Hours of Le Mans

LE MANS, France — Wednesday’s qualifying session ahead of the 24 Hours of Le Mans saw eight spots available for each class heading into Thursday’s hyperpole qualifying. 

By session’s end, BMW topped the charts in the Hypercar category, led by co-drivers Dries Vanthoor, Raffaele Marciello and Marco Wittmann. Wheeling the No. 15 BMW M Hybrid V8, Vanthoor had a fastest time of 3:24.465 around the famed Circuit de la Sarthe.

One of Chip Ganassi Racing’s two Cadillac entries in Hypercar, the No. 3 Cadillac V-Series.R, slotted in second with drivers Sebastian Bourdais, Renger van der Zande and six-time NTT IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon.

The No. 3 Cadillac V-Series.R at Le Mans. (Cadillac Racing Photo)

“Not too shabby for a 45-year-old,” Bourdais said following the session. “I’m really happy for the whole team. It was really difficult conditions. The first attempt I said ‘let’s go’ and didn’t back off. I got unlucky in the last sector, lost there-tenths because of a P2 car, but nevertheless a really solid lap. There was one shot and then after that there was traffic everywhere and people taking chances that would mess up your lap.

“I’m happy for the crew and for Cadillac. We’ll see about Hyperpole. You don’t know what’s going to happen with track conditions. But today was a good starting point. We made some changes after the afternoon practice and the car was really amazing.”

It looked to be a mega lap for the No. 8 Toyota GR010-Hybrid entry driven by Brendon Hartley, however, two spins in the final minutes ended the team’s hopes of making the fast-eight qualifiers. He co-drives the car with Sebastian Buemi and Ryo Hirakawa. 

Ferrari AF Corse filed two entries into the next round of qualifying, along with an additional CGR, Toyota, Alpine and Porsche Penske Motorsport entry. 


Malthe Jakobsen guided Cool Racing’s No. 37 Oreca 07-Gibson to provisional pole (3:32.827) in LMP2 ahead of AO by TF’s Louis Delétraz in the No. 14 Oreca 07-Gibson. The gap between the two was 0.307 seconds. 

United Autosports earned two spots in the next round, with their No. 23 Oreca driven by Ben Keating, Filipe Albuquerque and Ben Hanley taking third. The No. 22 entry for the team placed eighth, which is driven by Oliver Jarvis, Bijoy Garg and Indy NXT star Nolan Siegel. 


A 3:55.263 lap time gave Proton Competition and anchor driver Benjamin Barker the top spot in LMGT3 competition. He co-drives the No. 77 Ford Mustang LMGT3 with Ryan Hardwick and Zacharie Robichon.

The No. 70 McLaren fielded by Inception Racing placed second with Brendan Iribe, Ollie Millroy and Frederik Schandorff. 

Notably, the No. 86 Ferrari 296 LMGT3 of GR Racing was the only entry of the 62 competitors to not record a qualifying lap after spending the session in the garage with an electronic issue suffered during practice.