Aston Martin wins in Japan

The #95 V8 Vantage GTE Am class car won the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) Six Hours of Fuji.

Aston Martin wins in Japan
#97 Aston Martin Vantage V8: Darren Turner, Stefan Mücke
#97 Aston Martin Vantage V8: Darren Turner, Stefan Mücke
#98 Aston Martin Vantage V8: Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy, Christoffer Nygaard
#98 Aston Martin Vantage V8: Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy, Christoffer Nygaard
#98 Aston Martin Vantage V8: Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy, Christoffer Nygaard
#98 Aston Martin Vantage V8: Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy, Christoffer Nygaard
#98 Aston Martin Vantage V8: Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy, Christoffer Nygaard
#99 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8: Alex MacDowall, Darryl O'Young, Fernando Rees
#99 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8: Alex MacDowall, Darryl O'Young, Fernando Rees
#99 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8: Alex MacDowall, Darryl O'Young, Fernando Rees
#95 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8: Kristian Poulsen, David Heinemeier Hansson, Richie Stanaway
#95 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8: Kristian Poulsen, David Heinemeier Hansson, Nicki Thiim

Fuji - Aston Martin Racing has won the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) Six Hours of Fuji with its #95 V8 Vantage GTE Am class car. The #98 sister-car finished close behind in second place and the #99 took third place in the GTE Pro class in a race that was action-packed from the start.

At 1100hrs local time, the green flag waved and the #99 and #97 Vantage GTEs started side-by-side on the front row, following a successful qualifying session on Saturday afternoon. However, a chaotic start damaged the #97 and it was forced to return to the pits for an eight-minute stop it could never recover from.

The #99 – piloted by Fernando Rees (BR), Alex MacDowall (GB) and Darryl O’Young (HK) – continued on and spent the next six hours in a wheel-to-wheel battle with the two AF Corse Ferraris. A clever pit strategy, consistently quick lap times and a reliable car all contributed to the #99 Craft-Bamboo Racing team taking its first WEC podium in only its fifth Championship race.

I’m really pleased for the #95 team for extending its lead at the top of the Championship,

John Gaw

“When you start from the front of the GTE Pro class you are in the thick of it,” commented Rees. “You have to make sure that you don’t get caught up in any of the chaos and I did that well. I lost a place to Bruni but quickly recovered it and we led the race for a long time. To get our first podium as a new team in just our fifth race is fantastic. We have to stay focused now and try and do the same in Shanghai and beyond.”

Meanwhile, the pair of Aston Martin Racing GTE Am cars spent the race swapping places at the front of the class with the Danish trio of Kristian Poulsen, David Heinemeier Hansson and Nicki Thiim, at one point, leading the entire GTE field.

Despite challenges from Christoffer Nygaard (DN), Pedro Lamy (PT) and Paul Dalla Lana (CA) in the NorthWest-liveried #98, it was the #95 Young Driver AMR car that crossed the line first to take its third race win of the 2014 season and extend its lead at the top of the Championship.

If a car is easy to drive, like the Aston Martin is, the difference between the Am and Pro is smaller and that’s what wins Pro-Am races.

Heinemeier Hansson

“It’s great to be leading the Championship,” commented Heinemeier Hansson. “The Vantage GTE makes it easy for gentlemen drivers like Kristian and I to be mixing it up with the professional drivers. If a car is easy to drive, like the Aston Martin is, the difference between the Am and Pro is smaller and that’s what wins Pro-Am races.”

Despite setting the fastest GTE lap of the race, the #97 of Darren Turner (GB) and Stefan Mücke (DE) crossed the line in fifth place due to time in the pits early on in the race.

“I’m really pleased for the #95 team for extending its lead at the top of the Championship,” commented Team Principal John Gaw. “And, it’s good to see our two GTE Am cars so competitive at the front of every race.

“The #99 team has done a good job all weekend and it thoroughly deserves its first podium. Of course, it was disappointing for the #97 crew but the start of the race often takes victims and this time it was us.

“We always do well in Shanghai, we took our first WEC race win there in 2012 and then repeated it in 2013, so we must look forward and focus on keeping our strong record there.”

Aston Martin Racing

shares
comments
Podium finish and fourth place for the Porsche 919 Hybrid
Previous article

Podium finish and fourth place for the Porsche 919 Hybrid

Next article

Home hat-trick for Toyota Racing at Fuji

Home hat-trick for Toyota Racing at Fuji
Load comments
Why F1-snubbed Davidson has no regrets in retirement Prime

Why F1-snubbed Davidson has no regrets in retirement

He may not have won the Le Mans 24 Hours - falling agonisingly short in 2016 - and didn't get the opportunities in Formula 1 his talents merited. But after calling time on his professional career last month, Anthony Davidson says his pride in his performances with Peugeot and Toyota in LMP1 mean more than the results he achieved

WEC
Dec 17, 2021
Why Le Mans didn't decide Toyota's WEC title outcome in 2021 Prime

Why Le Mans didn't decide Toyota's WEC title outcome in 2021

Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez scored a second successive FIA World Endurance Championship title in the #7 Toyota, as its new Le Mans Hypercar went unbeaten. Motorsport.com recaps how each of the four classes in the 2021 season were won and picks out the best LMH and GTE drivers

WEC
Nov 28, 2021
The unanswered questions that define WEC 2021's controversial ending Prime

The unanswered questions that define WEC 2021's controversial ending

OPINION: The deeply unsatisfying ending to a brilliant World Endurance Championship GTE Pro battle in Bahrain had Ferrari provisionally heading back from the desert as the victor. But Porsche plans to appeal the outcome, which rests on a number of confusing elements that have yet to be satisfactorily explained.

WEC
Nov 9, 2021
How the WEC's heavyweight duel reached its controversial flashpoint Prime

How the WEC's heavyweight duel reached its controversial flashpoint

The Ferrari versus Porsche fight for the FIA World Endurance Championship's GTE Pro title had been a finely-poised affair, right up until Alessandro Pier Guidi's punt on Michael Christensen in the closing stages of the Bahrain 8 Hours handed Ferrari a provisional title, pending Porsche's appeal. Here's how the controversy played out.

WEC
Nov 8, 2021
The remarkable fixes Toyota used to avert another Le Mans disaster Prime

The remarkable fixes Toyota used to avert another Le Mans disaster

The 1-2 finish achieved by Toyota at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours was a result that will have surprised few, given its status as pre-event favourite. But the result was anything but straightforward, as worsening fuel pressure concerns required the team's drivers and engineers to pursue "creative fixes" on the fly. Here is the full story of how it reached the end without a lengthy pit visit

Le Mans
Nov 3, 2021
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Prime

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment.

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood Prime

Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood

Team WRT has been at the forefront of GT racing for years and made a successful move to prototypes for 2021, capped by an LMP2 win on its Le Mans debut. It could've been even better had the race been one lap shorter, when its cars ran 1-2, but the stranger-than-fiction reality has spurred the team to reach greater heights.

Le Mans
Oct 16, 2021
Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked Prime

Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked

Toyota scored its fourth Le Mans 24 Hours victory and a 1-2, with the #7 car of Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez beating the #8. But although it looked straightforward from the outside, Toyota faced serious problem that had to be solved with some quick-thinking and ingenuity.

Le Mans
Aug 24, 2021