Who has made the dragon dance in Shanghai? (Part 2 of 2)
Shanghai has been on the FIA WEC’s schedule since the start and it has offered up some interesting races and facts from among its winners since 2012. Here is a look at the winners from 2015-2017.
More usually seen at the tail end of the championship, when title fights are intensifying by the minute, this year’s 6 Hours of Shanghai (16-18 November) is round five of the Super Season. Not that that will detract from the spectacle ahead!
Will SMP Racing break through for a podium finish? Will Ferrari take its first win in GTE Pro? Will BMW climb to the top step? Will ORECA maintain its winning form in China? Will Porsche secure an Am victory for the first time?
2015 – Porsche Team/Signatech Alpine/Porsche Team Manthey/AF Corse
Porsche won big in China, with Timo Bernhard, Mark Webber and Brendon Hartley climbing to the top step of the podium to celebrate the marque’s first World Endurance Championship for the dominant 919 Hybrid. Signatech Alpine took its first WEC victory with the Alpine A450b-Nissan (Nelson Panciatici/Paul-Loup Chatin/Tom Dillmann), while Porsche Team Manthey celebrated its second consecutive GTE Pro Shanghai win, the 911 RSR in the hands of Richard Lietz and Michael Christensen. In GTE Am, AF Corse’s Ferrari F458 Italia (François Perrodo/Emmanuel Collard/Rui Aguas) came home ahead of the pack to take an inaugural victory for the French-Portuguese line up.
2016 – Porsche Team/G-Drive Racing/Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK/Aston Martin Racing
There was a good deal of familiarity among the podium winners this year – Timo Bernhard/Mark Webber/Brendon Hartley in the Porsche 919 Hybrid taking a second win in China, G-Drive Racing sealing a third LMP2 victory in Shanghai (Roman Rusinov/Will Stevens/Alex Brundle) in the ORECA 05 Nissan, and Aston Martin Racing’s Paul Dalla Lana/Pedro Lamy/Mathias Lauda coming home first in GTE Am in the Vantage V8. The Ford GTs were dominant in GTE Pro, taking a 1-2 finish in both Asian rounds, with Andy Priaulx and Harry Tincknell having the upper hand over their team mates.
2017 – Toyota Gazoo Racing/Rebellion Racing/Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK/Aston Martin Racing
Toyota’s TS050 HYBRID of Kazuki Nakajima, Anthony Davidson and Sébastien Buemi led a convincing display by the Japanese manufacturer, its third victory in China in six years. In LMP2, a hugely unpredictable LMP2 race was won by the Vaillante Rebellion ORECA 07 Gibson of Bruno Senna, Nicolas Prost and Julien Canal, on its way to the championship title. Both Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK’s Ford GT (Andy Priaulx/Harry Tincknell) and Aston Martin Racing’s Vantage V8 (Paul Dalla Lana/Pedro Lamy/Mathias Lauda) repeated their 2016 victories in Shanghai in the GTE Pro and Am classes respectively.