WEC: Porsche Wins In Shanghai To Clinch Championship
Porsche claimed its sixth win of the 2016 World Endurance Championship in Shanghai, wrapping up its defence of the manufacturers’ championship title in the process…
At the penultimate round of the WEC series at Shanghai International Circuit, the No1 919 Hybrid of Timo Bernhard, Brendon Hartley and Mark Webber started from pole position and enjoyed a textbook race. From pole Hartley double stinted before handing the car over to Bernhard on lap 60, Bernhard followed the same pattern completing a double stint behind the wheel before swapping with Webber on lap 120. A single stint for the retiring Aussie saw him hand the car back to Hartley as early as lap 150, allowing the 26-year old to bring the car home in the lead on lap 195 – the successful completion of a six-hour race.
For the sister 919 Hybrid driven by Romain Dumas, Neel Jani and Marc Lieb, things weren’t quite as straight-forward. The driver’s championship leaders started from sixth position on the grid with Jani at the wheel. After a double stint it was Lieb’s chance to drive, inheriting the No2 car on lap 59 whilst it was sat in second spot. On lap 80 Lieb was passed by the No6 Toyota, after a driver swap his teammate Dumas was overtaken by the No5 Toyota, relegated the car to fourth position. With Jani back in the car on lap 119 he did a commendable job to get past one of the Toyotas on the track, passing the other while it made an unscheduled pit stop. Ultimately though the No2 919 would have to settle for fourth place when the No5 Toyota repassed it before the finish.
The race result in Shanghai means that Porsche has clinched WEC 2016 World Championship for manufacturers, securing the title one race before the season finale in Bahrain on 19th November. Finishing first and fourth earned Porsche 38 points, bringing its season tally to 301 points, closest rivals Audi (222 points) and Toyota (207 points) now cannot catch Porsche’s total at the one remaining round. From the 24 races in which it has now competed, the 919 Hybrid has accumulated 13 race wins and 15 pole positions. Going into the final WEC round in Bahrain, Dumas, Jani and Lieb head the driver’s championship standings by 17 points.
Porsche Team Principal, Andreas Seidl, said: “It feels great having secured the manufacturers’ world championship title again for Porsche. This is an achievement by every single team member – at home in Weissach, here at the race track and also thanks to our partners. The title is the result of having a fast, reliable car and a strong team performance.”
Race result 6 Hours Shanghai (CHN):
|1.||Bernhard/Hartley/Webber||Porsche 919 Hybrid||195 laps|
|2.||Sarrazin/Conway/Koayashi||Toyota TS050||195 laps|
|3.||Davidson, Buemi, Nakajima||Toyota TS050||195 laps|
|4.||Dumas/Jani/Lieb||Porsche 919 Hybrid||195 laps|
Drivers’ World Championship after eight out of nine rounds:
|3.||Di Grassi/Duval/Jarvis||Audi R18||121.5 points|
Constructors’ World Championship: