For the first time ever, both Porsche 919 Hybrid crews were part of the podium ceremony: The trio of Romain Dumas, Neel Jani and Marc Lieb finished second overall in round seven of the FIA World Endurance Championship in Bahrain. Immediately behind them their sister car crossed the line. Timo Bernhard, Brendon Hartley and Mark Webber were the third to take the checkered flag in the six-hour race. Together, these are the fourth and fifth podium finishes for the Porsche 919 Hybrid this season. Full gallery of images at the end of the race report.
Fritz Enzinger, Vice President LMP1: “It is unbelievable that, after we celebrated our third pole position yesterday, today we made even more progress. What is really important: We were able to improve our race pace and get closer to the fastest cars. In the end we tried to do a double stint on the same set of tyres with the number 20 car, which didn’t really work out. Nevertheless, congratulations to the team! We look forward to Sao Paulo very positively.”
Great fights for position in the beginning and strategies that produced exciting outcomes in the end were the result of the penultimate round of the world championship, along with high temperatures of over 30 degrees Celsius.
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How The Race Went For Car Number 14
Dumas started from pole position and stayed in front until he was passed by a Toyota on lap five. Being the only car in the leading group not to pit during a full course yellow on lap 17, he took the lead again and held it until his pit stop for fuel and tires after 30 laps. Dumas switched with Lieb, while in second place, after 61 laps. Lieb then came in for his first pit stop for fuel and tires after 92 laps. On lap 100 he overtook an Audi and moved up to P3 again. After 123 laps Jani took over from Lieb in second position. After 154 laps he came in for tires and fuel and after 182 laps for fuel only. On fresher tires, he was the faster of the two 919 Hybrids and passed his sister car (#20) for second position.
Neel Jani (30, Switzerland): “This was a good race. After yesterday’s pole position it is nice to have both cars on the podium today. Unfortunately in the end we were not in a position to fight for the race win. We will analyse to see if the decision on the strategy during the full course yellow was the right one. Nevertheless, in the end we were able to match the Toyota’s speed. We are improving race by race and today we were really close. Hopefully we can fight for the next step on the podium in Sao Paulo.”
How The Race Went For Car Number 20
Hartley started from third on the grid, improved to second, but then dropped behind the two Toyotas to P4. Soon, due to the very high surface and air temperatures, he suffered from problems with the brake temperatures. He came in during the full course yellow after 17 laps for fuel and tires, and continued in P5. When he handed over the car to Bernhard after 48 laps, he had improved to third. Bernhard was leading the race when pitting after lap 79 for fuel and tires and was then leading again, thanks to other cars’ stops, when he handed over the car to Webber after 110 laps. Webber refueled and received fresh tires after 141 laps. For his next stop, after 169 laps, the team and he together decided to take the risk of saving time by not changing tires and only refueling the car to go to the finish of the race.
A strategy that saw them finish 3rd after being passed by his sister car (#14) who went on to finish 2nd.
Mark Webber (38, Australia): ”It is a great day for Porsche to get two cars onto the podium. The conditions were not easy for the cars and, therefore, the result is another milestone. We learn a huge amount in every event. With the number 20 car we were not quite able to do the same pace as the number 14 car today. For all three of us it was a tricky day, a bit like it started yesterday in qualifying.”
Race Result 6 Hours Of Sakhir (Bahrain):
1. Wurz/Sarrazin/Conway (A/F/GB), Toyota TS040 Hybrid, 195 laps
2. Dumas/Jani/Lieb (F/CH/D), Porsche 919 Hybrid, – 50,460 s
3. Bernhard/Hartley/Webber (D/NZ/AUS), Porsche 919 Hybrid, – 57,268 s
4. Fässler/Lotterer/Tréluyer (CH/D/F), Audi R18 e-tron quattro, – 1 lap
5. Di Grassi/Duval/Kristensen (BRA/F/DK), Audi R18 e-tron quattro, – 2 laps
6. Kraihammer/Belicchi/Leimer (A/I/CH), Rebellion R-One-Toyota, – 7 laps
FIA World Endurance Champonship (WEC) after 7 out of 8 rounds,Drivers’ standings:
1. Davidson/Buemi (GB/CH), Toyota, 148 (world champions)
2. Lotterer/Tréluyer/Fässler (D/F/CH), Audi, 117
3. Wurz/Sarrazin (A/F), Toyota, 104
4. Di Grassi/Kristensen (BRA/DK), Audi, 102
5. Lapierre (F), Toyota, 96
6. Dumas/Jani/Lieb (F/CH/D), Porsche, 92
7. Nakajima (J), Toyota, 71
8. Duval (F), Audi, 66
9. Bernhard/Hartley/Webber (D/NZ/AUS), Porsche, 63,5
10. Prost/Heidfeld/Beche (F/D/CH), Rebellion, 60,5
1. Toyota, 259
2. Audi, 219
3. Porsche, 167
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