Toyota and G-Drive win in Bahrain, OAK Racing takes LMP2 Championship
Toyota Racing took its first racing victory of the 2013 FIA WEC season at the close of the 6 Hours of Bahrain, the No.8 TS030 Hybrid of Anthony Davidson, Sébastien Buemi and Stéphane Sarrazin winning a race of attrition which saw set-backs for both the hybrid-powered LMP1 manufacturers, Toyota and Audi.
The British-Swiss-French line up took victory by 1m10s over the No.1 Audi R18 e-tron quattro of André Lotterer, Benoît Tréluyer and Marcel Fässler but both teams suffered mixed fortunes during the race, two-thirds of which was run in darkness at the magnificent Bahrain International Circuit.
An engine issue caused the retirement of the pole-winning No.7 TS030 Hybrid of Alex Wurz, Nicolas Lapierre and Kazuki Nakajima just before the end of the second hour, while a drivetrain problem caused the unusual sight of an Audi retirement for the World Drivers’ Champions, Loïc Duval, Tom Kristensen and Allan McNish. Despite being unclassified for this 8th and final round of the 2013 FIA WEC season, the trio had secured enough points in Shanghai to be assured of the title.
Despite the LMP1 Privateer title being wrapped up some time ago by the uncontested Rebellion Racing, the Swiss team’s last race with the Lola-Toyota ended in spectacular fashion with an engine fire just before the clock hit 90 minutes gone. Nicolas Prost sensibly pulled off next to a fire marshal’s post to enable the flames to be extinguished quickly, but the incident forced the team into retirement.
In LMP2 G-Drive Racing’s No.26 ORECA 03 Nissan won its fourth race of the season in the hands of Roman Rusinov, Mike Conway and John Martin and finished third overall, but second in class for the No.24 OAK Racing Morgan Nissan of Olivier Pla, Alex Brundle and David Heinemeier Hansson was enough to give the French team the FIA Endurance Trophy for LMP2 Teams.
Fourth behind the No.41 Greaves Motorsport Zytek Z11SN Nissan of Bjorn Wirdheim and accomplished FIA WEC newcomers Wolfgang Reip and Jon Lancaster was the No.35 OAK Racing Morgan Nissan. That result was all that was needed to give Martin Plowman, Bertrand Baguette and Ricardo Gonzalez the LMP2 Drivers championship title, and ensure that OAK Racing also took second place in the Team’s points’ battle.
A cascade of fireworks was released as the chequered flag flew for the final race of the 2013 season, and we now look forward with even greater anticipation to the start of the 2014 FIA World Endurance Championship on Sunday 20th April at Silverstone in the UK. See you there!
Full results can be found HERE
Final 90 minutes key points:
21:06:15 No.95 Aston wins GTE Am fro No.81 Ferrari and No.61 Ferrari
21:05:20 No.51 Ferrari wins GTE Pro from No.91 Porsche and No.71 Ferrari
21:04:14 No.26 G-Drive Oreca wins LMP2 from No.24 Morgan and No.41 Zytek
21:03:01 No.8 Toyota wins LMP1 by 1:10.585 from No.1 Audi completing 199 laps
21:01:00 Chequered Flag:Toyota No.8 wins the 6 Hours of Bahrain, final race of the FIA/WEC 2013
20:56:17 No.8 still has lead of 1 minute and 8 seconds from No.1
20:51:42 No.96 Aston into pits
20:50:35 Last 10 minutes
20:47:29 No.41 into pits will drop to 3rd in LMP2
20:45:30 No.49 into pits
20:39:39 No.8 leader reports vibration at the rear
20:37:11 No.45 Oak into pits
20:30:55 No.25 back out
20:26:36 No.25 wheeled back into garage
20:25:52 No.41 up to 2nd in LMP2
20:23:02 No.26 retakes lead in LMP2
20:22:15 New front bodywork for No.24 due to faulty light
20:21:30 No.24 LMP2 leader into pitlane
20:20:35 1:44.183 fastest lap of race for Lotterer
20:19:46 No.8 leader into pitlane
20:19:09 John Martin in No.26 now
20:16:39 No.26 LMP2 leader into pits
20:15:45 No.1 Audi into pits for final stop
20:10:42 No.99 Aston retires
20:05:55 No.99 into pit box (3rd in Pro)
20:03:56 No.95 Am leader also stops - Thiim in
20:02:43 8-Star Ferrari No.81 in for regular stop - 2nd in GTE Am
20:01:20 Final hour
20:00:16 No.91 stop for GTE Pro 2nd place car - Bergmeister in
19:55:06 Black and white flag for No.26
19:53:53 No.49 back into pit garage
19:48:34 No.24 Oak takes 2nd in LMP2 from No.41
19:47:44 No.49 rejoins
19:45:40 No.49 Pecom Oreca still in pit garage - slipped to 6th in class
19:41:28 No.8 Toyota into pits- Davidson out, Buemi in
19:39:59 Front right brake failure suspected in No.49
19:38:08 No.49 into pits -rear damage and wheeled into garage
19:36:59 No.49 hits barriers at final corner
19:34:26 No.26 retakes lead in LMP2
19:33:44 No.24 now leads LMP2 but now stops
19:32:06 Spin for No.76 Porsche
19:31:23 Conway now in leading LMP2 No.26
19:30:39 No.1 Audi into pits
Photo: BAHRAIN INTERNATIONAL CIRCUIT (SAKHIR, BAHRAIN), 6 HOURS OF BAHRAIN, SATURDAY 30 NOVEMBER 2013, RACE. Winners of the 6 Hours of Bahrain were Stephane Sarrazin, Anthony Davidson and Sebastien Buemi of the No.8 Toyota TS030 Hybrid.