Toyota dominant at Fuji again
Toyota dominant at Fuji again
After last year’s torrential downpour restricted the race to a mere 16 laps under safety car at Fuji Speedway, this year’s FIA World Endurance Championship victory was earned in style by Toyota Hybrid Racing who recorded a crushing 1-2 finish.
The result was the third consecutive victory for the Japanese manfuacturer in Japan. The #8 Toyota TS040 Hybrid of Anthony Davidson and Sebastien Buemi led home the sister car, crewed by Alex Wurz, Stephane Sarrazin and local hero Kazuki Nakajima by 25.627s. It was the third victory for the #8 Toyota TS040 Hybrid this season after previous successes at Silverstone and Spa.
Toyota leaves Japan with the lead in both the manufacturers and driver’s championship.
Toyota controlled the race despite Mark Webber’s #20 Porsche 919 Hybrid leading briefly after some highly entertaining first lap action. Both Toyotas ended up with a one lap advantage over Porsche which finished 3rd and 4th. It was the second podium for Webber, Hartley and Bernhard after their third placed finish at Silverstone in April. Webber also set the fastest lap – 1m27.759 – on lap 12
After taking the spoils at Circuit of the Americas, Audi could only manage fifth and sixth – finished two and three laps behind the winning Toyota.
“It was an absolutely perfect race and a perfect weekend for everyone at TOYOTA Racing,” Anthony Davidson said.
“That was a great job by all the team; we had the strongest car, the right strategy and great pit stops. First and second in our home race; it doesn’t get better than that. For the team to win here three times in a row now is pretty special.
“It extends our lead in the drivers’ World Championship and regains the lead in the manufacturers’, so you couldn’t ask for any more as a team. So big thanks to all and especially to the guys from TOYOTA Motor Corporation who have given us such great support this week.”
Racing resumes for WEC next month with a hectic climax to the year, starting on November 2 with the Six Hours of Shanghai in China prior to the season-closing races in Bahrain and Sao Paulo, Brazil.
“To leave Fuji with a one-two and the lead of both World Championships is a very special feeling,” SÃ©bastien Buemi said.
“At the start it was clearly a bit difficult to warm up the tires so I was in the middle of a big fight; the first lap was quite crazy.
“After that we took control. It was a great job from Anthony and the whole team. Honestly, we didn’t expect to be so far ahead but it is the result of a lot of hard work. We’ll enjoy this moment but quickly focus on the remaining races. Today’s result is a good sign for the rest of the season.”
The new Ligier-Nissan JSP2 coupe claimed its firstLM P2 victory for the OAK/G-Drive trio of Olivier Pla, Julien Canal and Roman Rusinov.
Ferrari dominated the GTE-Pro category with a 1-2 finish led by Gianmaria Bruni and Toni Vilander while Aston Martin took the GTE-Am honors – also with a 1-2 result.