Porsche Penske Motorsport’s No.6 963 topped the second free practice session of Le Mans race week this evening, as the teams and drivers got their first taste of night running ahead of this weekend’s race. Crucially, it also allowed the drivers to complete their minimum required night laps early.

After an incident-packed FP1 and Qualifying Practice earlier in the day, Free Practice 2 was far less dramatic, with only a handful of minor incidents during the two hours of track time. The pace eased off, too. With no shootout spots to fight for, the drivers were clearly not tempted to take risks.

The quickest time in the session was set by Laurens Vanthoor, a 3m28.878s, just over 0.3s faster than the No.51 AF Corse Ferrari 499P which had its best time set halfway through the session by James Calado: a 3m29.225s. The sister FIA WEC full-season Penske Porsche, the No.5, was third ahead of the No. 2 Cadillac and the No. 7 Toyota fifth.

Elsewhere in the class, it was not a quiet session for HERTZ Team JOTA, which had its 963 stop at Mulsanne Corner, adding to its Qualifying Practice woes when the car required multiple resets due to a recurring hybrid failure alarm. However, the team completed 27 laps this evening, finishing with the sixth-fastest time after a late improvement from Will Stevens (3m29.784s).

Action Express, too, was in the wars, its Cadillac was spotted crawling to the pitlane with damage to the front-right corner with Alex Sims at the wheel. Gustavo Menezes, meanwhile, missed his pit box in the No.94 Peugeot 9X8 before the car was pushed into the garage for work to its front end.

In LMP2, Prema set the fastest time, its No. 63 ORECA touring the circuit in 3m36.863s courtesy of future Lamborghini LMDh driver Mirko Bortolotti. The No. 22 United Autosports ORECA ended up second with a 3m37.079s. The JOTA No. 38 example which topped Qualify ing slotted in third with a 3m37.885s.

And in GTE Am, Kessel Racing improved late to put its No.74 Ferrari 488 atop the times after a 3m53.796 from Kei Cozzolino. This pushed the Iron Lynx Porsche to second after Alessio Picareillo reeled off a 3m54.080s to go less than a tenth faster than the Project 1 AO ‘Rexy’ Porsche, which ensured two Porsches were in the top three with a 3m54.172s.

Hendrick Motorsports’ Garage 56 Camaro ZL1 again took up its spot between the last of the LMP2 runners and the fastest in GTE Am. A 3m51.904s was its best time, set by Mike Rockenfeller.

Track action continues tomorrow afternoon for the Le Mans 24 Hours runners, with Free Practice 3 at 15:00 local time.