Blancpain GT Sports Club’s 2016 champion, Michael Broniszewski, topped the first free practice session at Circuit Paul Ricard, putting his Kessel Racing #1 Ferrari 488 GT3 0.334 seconds ahead of AF Corse’s Mario Cordoni.
For the first half of the session, the order at the top continued to change, as the 22 drivers reacclimatised themselves to the Le Castellet track. BMS Scuderia Italia driver Luigi Lucchini traded times with Broniszewski, but couldn’t improve late on, whereas the Polish ace extended his gap at the top.
Cordoni wrestled his Ferrari 488 GT3 right until the chequered flag, taking second spot on his final lap. Monza double race-winner Jens Reno Moller also shot up the timings late on to go third on board his #11 Honda NSX GT3 Evo, demoting Lucchini to fourth.
Murod Sultanov was another to improve in the final moments, going fifth quickest with the #23 Kessel Racing Ferrari 488 GT3, ahead of leading Titanium Cup runner Lee Mowle. The ERC Sport driver was on top early on and headed the class for drivers aged 50-59 throughout the session.
Fellow Titanium Cup driver Coach McKansy was second on board his 2019-spec Lamborghini Huracan GT3, with newcomer Robert Zwinger impressing on his debut in eighth for HB Racing.
Rounding out the top 10 was Rinaldi Racing’s Vadim Kogay and AF Corse’s Frederic Fangio, both of whom are running a Ferrari 488 GT3.
In the Iron Cup, it was class leader Stephen Earle on top after a late improvement, with AF Corse’s Louis Philippe Soenen ending the session behind the Kessel Racing driver, ahead of Rick Peter Lovat.