The French-Spanish pair carried a nice 4.239s advantage over from the Saturday morning session on the four-mile seaside course.
Instances would show virtually invariably slower within the afternoon shootout because the sand ruts grew deeper.
That meant Loeb and Gutierrez returned a stint of 10m57.567s, a bit over 10s adrift of their morning tempo, however they remained the one duo to dip underneath the 11-minute barrier.
The fifth of the 9 groups to take to the circuit, Gutierrez handed over to Loeb and the nine-time World Rally Champion proved characteristically easy behind the wheel.
He crossed the road with a large 27.58s in hand over the drivers of Rosberg X Racing, affording the workforce the within grid place for the primary semi-final on Sunday morning.
Inaugural Saudi Arabia occasion winner RXR finally managed to recuperate second within the mixed occasions, having benefited from a morning penalty for Abt Cupra when official collection reserve racer Jutta Kleinschmidt entered the motive force changeover space earlier than her momentary team-mate Mattias Ekstrom had come to a cease and hit impartial.
RXR duo Johan Krisotffersson and Molly Taylor secured the place regardless of a large second for Taylor, when the rear axle was flicked up into the air after which the automobile nosedived, forcing the Australian to divert properly off line to recuperate.
Abt Cupra secured the ultimate place within the first semi-final as Ekstrom and 2001 Dakar Rally winner Kleinschmidt – changing the sickness-sidelined Claudia Hurtgen – recorded the second quickest time of the afternoon however fell again as a result of earlier penalty.
Jutta Kleinschmidt /Mattias Ekstrom, ABT CUPRA XE
Picture by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images
Kleinschmidt was one other driver pressured into evasive motion when the rear of her automobile took flight and the Odyssey 21 crashed again down on its bump stops. She was additionally briefly delayed on the driver changeover when her HANS system caught.
With Kevin Hansen filling in for the absent Jenson Button, JBXE was the primary workforce into the second semi-final courtesy of his and team-mate Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky’s easy runs.
An early tub in Saudi, when Veloce Racing driver Stephane Sarrazin rolled and terminally broken the automobile’s roll cage, meant the tempo of the Frenchman and team-mate Jamie Chadwick was subdued.
A “low-risk” technique and choosing a distinct racing line to their equally conservative morning efforts meant they ended the day fifth quickest within the mixed occasions, however seventh within the afternoon run solely.
The ART Grand Prix-supported entry can be joined within the second semi-final by the rebranded Xite Power Racing squad, previously Hispano Suiza, with the trouble-free however unremarkable exploits of Oliver Bennett and Cristina Giampaoli Zonca suffice to progress into the warmth.
A torrid begin to life in Excessive E for Chip Ganassi Racing continued because the American outfit missed out on the semi-final as a consequence of a protracted automobile shutdown throughout Kyle LeDuc’s run.
The speedy American was first within the automobile and flying from the off with a win-or-bust type to extract a 6.3s margin over every other driver on the time of his lap. However a heavy touchdown appeared to set off a full shutdown and LeDuc was pressured to exit the automobile and hit an exterior reset button at a value of just about 4 minutes.
Sara Value, Kyle Leduc, Chip Ganassi Racing
Picture by: Colin McMaster / Motorsport Images
He lastly resumed in equally speedy trend to claw again 12s however he and team-mate Sara Value have been successfully already eradicated from the semi-final battles.
Andretti United in the meantime hit extra bother. Timmy Hansen’s morning automobile reset was compounded by set-up alterations that appeared to not go well with both him or stablemate Catie Munnings, leaving them down in eighth.
Double World Rally champion Carlos Sainz Sr and his co-owned Acciona Sainz workforce walked away in final after a morning water pump failure for the powertrain cooling package deal.
The automobile was repaired in time for the afternoon shootout, the place he and Laia Sanz snared the sixth quickest time. However with no morning banker laps, they have been out of competition.