After a full month off, WEC teams were chomping at the bit for to turn laps in Germany this weekend. The Grand Prix circuit at the Nurburgring had the honors of hosting the WEC’s fourth round. When the race clock struck 0:00:000, winners were declared, and track action was completed, familiar faces stood atop the podium claiming top honors.
A fuel pump problem for the No. 8 Toyota in the formation lap put the car five laps down at the start of the race. The car would not recover any laps but managed to finish fourth.
In the races first hour, the No. 7 Toyota maintained a slim lead as the two Porsches stalked close behind. The gap from first to third rarely exceeded five seconds in the first two hours of the race.
After surviving the first hour in the lead, the No. 7 Toyota succumbed to Porsche’s pressure as the No. 2 car at the hands of Brendon Hartley overtook Jose Maria Lopez. The No. 1 Porsche would quickly follow suit moving into second place.
As the Porsches engaged exchanging the lead with time ticking off the clock, the gap to the third place Toyota grew.
Ultimately, the driving skill of Timo Behrnard, Brendon Hartley, and Earl Bamber put the trio on top to claim victory at the Nurburgring ahead of their sister car. The win is the third straight at the Nurburgring for the Bernard/Hartley pairing, the second straight win in the season after winning Le Mans, and increases their Championship lead over the fourth placed No. 8 Toyota.
Whether the new high downforce kit on the Porsche 919 Hybrid has swung the advantage over Toyota completely remains to be seen. As the track layout at the Nurburgring is composed of more twists and bends than the tracks remaining on the calendar, the 1-2 result for Porsche could be a one off.
“The Mighty 38,” put on another absolute clinic in LMP2 as the legend continues to grow. On the heels of their appearance on the overall podium at Le Mans, the No. 38 Jackie Chan DC Racing team finished a full lap ahead of the rest of the LMP2 challengers.
With the competition running the exact same Oreca chassis and Gibson engines, the performance of the No. 38 and it’s crew is nothing short of stunning. One wonders what the car will be able to accomplish next.
AF Corse was able to hold off the two Porsches in GTE PRO to take the class victory with their No. 51 car. The win is the first of the year for the No. 51, a result the team would like to build at the next series stop as they currently sit second in the Championship behind the No. 67 Ford GT.
Photo Credit: Proton Racing Twitter page
In the scrappiest class battle of the race, it would be the No. 77 Dempsey-Proton Porsche winning GTE AM. The win is the second in the teams history and will let them join their big brothers in LMP1 at the winners circle after party.
All supporters of Porsche leave the day smiling as the German marque claims two out of four class victories on home soil.
Who will be smiling in three weeks time as the series travels to Mexico? Stay tuned and follow L&T Motorsport for all your WEC news and race coverage.