After a wet/dry first free practice session, it is already clear that the opening round of the 2023 GT4 European Series will be an exciting affair. The first 17 cars were separated by under a second, with the #3 Team Speedcar Audi topping the time sheets.
Morning showers had left the Monza circuit thoroughly wet at the start of the first free practice session. Fortunately, the rain had ceased, and a dry line was developing quickly. With just over half an hour to go Alexander Hartvig, in the #22 Allied Porsche, was the first to break the two-minute barrier, quickly followed by some of his colleagues.
The lap times kept getting quicker, but with 15 minutes to go the session was red-flagged, after an off for the #13 Overdrive Racing Porsche. The recovery teams only needed a couple of minutes to bring the Porsche with the striking livery into safety, after which the fastest of the GT4 drivers could have a final go at some quick lap times.
Eventually, it was Benjamin Lariche in the #3 Team Speedcar Audi who set the fastest time, in 1’56.825. A last-gasp effort of Gabriele Piana put the #2 Hofor Racing BMW in second, a mere 54 thousandths of a second off the fastest time. Gael Castelli in the #111 CSA Racing Audi completed the top 3, both overall and in the Silver category.
The fastest of the Pro-Am cars, the #30 W&S Motorsport Porsche, ended up in fifth overall, with the #10 AVR-Avvatar Porsche (21st overall) claiming the top spot in the Am category. The second free practice session starts at 14.20 CEST on Friday afternoon.