Toyota wins in Portimao as Ferrari and Porsche makes it three manufacturers on Hypercar podium
Brendon Hartley, Sebastien Buemi and Ryo Hirakawa celebrated a conclusive victory in the 6 Hours of Portimao and vault to the top of the 2023 WEC Hypercar points table.
The podium saw three different manufacturers (Toyota, Ferrari and Porsche) represented on the podium for the first time this season.
Buemi, who started the race in the No.8 Toyota GR010 Hybrid Hypercar dropped to third at the start but soon fought back and got on terms with stablemate Mike Conway in the No.7 Toyota.
From that point on the No.8 was never headed, and when Conway was forced to pit after a torque sensor alert forced an unscheduled pit-stop for a driveshaft and corner assembly change, Ryo Hirakawa and then Hartley then cruised to victory.
The No. 50 Ferrari 499P of Antonio Fuoco, Miguel Molina and Nicklas Nielsen secured Ferrari AF Corse’s best ever WEC result in its second appearance.
The No. 6 Porsche 963 of Andre Lotterer, Kevin Estre and Laurens Vanthoor claimed third and the first WEC podium for the Porsche Penske Motorsport squad.
This was achieved despite a late fuel stop for Lotterer, who was able to re-join just ahead of Alex Lynn in the No. 2 Cadillac V-Series.R Hypercar.
Lynn came home in fourth position sharing the car with Richard Westbrook and Earl Bamber in the designs first appearance on European soil.
The No. 51 Ferrari of Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado and Antonio Giovinazzi had looked to be in position to fight for the podium but a brake problem and a switch off of its hybrid system saw them fall back to sixth position at the chequered flag.
Those dramas allowed a fifth place finish for the No. 94 Peugeot TotalEnergies 9X8 Hypercar of Loic Duval, Gustavo Menezes and Nico Mueller.
The sister No. 93 Peugeot 9X8 finished seventh after starting from the pit lane due to a pre-race change in its steering mechanism.
The Glickenhaus 007 of Romain Dumas, Ryan Briscoe and Olivier Pla took eighth, while the delayed No.7 Toyota of Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose-Maria Lopez placed ninth.
The Floyd Vanwall Hypercar retired after Jacques Villeneuve spun into the Turn 10 barriers after a suspected brake failure. This triggered the race’s only safety car period.
The No. 5 Porsche Penske 963 was classified in 10th place overall in Hypercar after power steering issues saw the car sent to the team garage for the final hour.
Find full results HERE
The FIA WEC will now have a short turnaround as the teams prepare for the TotalEnergies 6 Hours of Spa in two weeks’ time (29 April).