Toyota celebrate 1-2 home success and claim Hypercar manufacturers’ crown
It was a dream result for Toyota Gazoo Racing at its home race, the WEC 6 Hours of Fuji, as the Japanese manufacturer secured a one-two result. In the doing so, Toyota also sealed the manufacturers’ championship - their fifth in a row.
A total of 54,700 fans attended 6 Hours of Fuji over the weekend – a record crowd number for the Japanese round of WEC. The No. 7 Toyota Gazoo Racing run GR010 Hybrid Hypercar trio of Kamui Kobayashi, Jose Maria Lopez and Mike Conway sealed their fourth win of the 2023 season. They headed home the No. 8 sister car of Brendon Hartley, Sebastien Buemi and Ryo Hirakawa by 39,119 seconds.
Rounding out the top three was Porsche Penske Motorsport who equalled their best result of the season with the No. 6 Porsche 963 driven by Andre Lotterer, Kevin Estre and Laurens Vanthoor. The trio were leading for more than half of the race with an exceptional drive from Vanthoor in the opening stint but eventually finished 48s down on the second-placed Toyota.
Le Mans winners Ferrari AF Corse claimed fourth and fifth with No. 50 finishing ahead of the No.51 499P Hypercar. Meanwhile, Hertz Team JOTA took sixth position but lost early momentum after penalty for early race collision with No.28 LMP2 sister entry.
Peugeot TotalEnergies finished seventh and eighth with No. 94 9X8 of Gustavo Menezes, Stoffel Vandoorne and Loic Duval leading its stablemate to the finish line. The No. 93 Peugeot lost time after a lengthy pit stop while the team needed to fix a hydraulic issue in the race's final hour.
Proton Competition Porsche took its first WEC points after crossing the line ninth despite slipping out of contention with a safety belt issue mid-race.
Elsewhere, Cadillac Racing had a difficult race after No.2 V.Series R lost its left front wheel in penultimate hour followed by several lapses in the pits for repairs. The American squad finally finished tenth, also incurring a drive-through-penalty for exceeding track limits.
Floyd Vanwall took 11th position in the Vandervell 680 while No.5 Porsche Penske takes final classified position after losing time after first lap puncture and then long stop in fifth hour.
The final round of the 2023 FIA WEC season will take place in the Middle East at the start of November for the 8 Hours of Bahrain.