Toyota ends final WEC Prologue test session fastest

Toyota returnee Nicolas Lapierre ensured the Japanese marque finished WEC Prologue testing at Monza on top with a fast lap early in Sunday afternoon’s final session.

Toyota ends final WEC Prologue test session fastest
#8 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Anthony Davidson, Nicolas Lapierre, Kazuki Nakajima
#8 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Anthony Davidson, Nicolas Lapierre, Kazuki Nakajima
#8 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Anthony Davidson, Nicolas Lapierre, Kazuki Nakajima
#1 Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid: Neel Jani, Andre Lotterer, Nick Tandy
#2 Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid: Timo Bernhard, Earl Bamber, Brendon Hartley
#38 DC Racing Oreca 07 Gibson: Ho-Pin Tung, Oliver Jarvis, Thomas Laurent
#67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT: Andy Priaulx, Harry Tincknell
#92 Porsche Team Porsche 911 RSR: Michael Christensen, Kevin Estre
#61 Clearwater Racing Ferrari 488 GTE: Mok Weng Sun, Matt Griffin, Keita Sawa

Lapierre, who re-joins Toyota for this year’s Spa and Le Mans races, lapped the Italian track in 1m30.547s at the very start of the final three-hour session on board the #8 TS050 Hybrid.

That was some eight tenths faster than Mike Conway had managed on Saturday, and nearly a full second ahead of the #7 Toyota’s best time of Sunday afternoon – a 1m31.477s set by Kamui Kobayashi with a little over 45 minutes left.

The Japanese driver’s time came just before the session was red-flagged due to Matt Rao going off and hitting the barriers at the first Lesmo in the #36 Signatech Alpine during a late rain shower.

After a brief delay, the session was resumed, but the wet track meant no further improvements were made.

Porsche therefore ended up third and fourth in the final test session of the Prologue, with Nick Tandy putting the #1 919 Hybrid ahead of the sister #2 car with an early lap of 1m31.844s.

The #2 crew’s best time was a 1m32.066s, set by 2015 WEC champion Timo Bernhard.

LMP2 was topped by the #38 JOTA Sport run-DC Racing Oreca of Ho-Pin Tung, who set a 1m36.448s – four tenths shy of Matthieu Vaxiviere’s best effort in the #28 TDS car from earlier in the day.

Second was the #35 Signatech Alpine car of Nelson Panciatici, a little over a tenth behind, while Vitaly Petrov put the sole #24 Manor Oreca third in class, a further 0.031s back.

Ford beats Porsche in GTE

Ford ended Porsche’s domination of the GTE Pro category, with the pair of Ganassi-run GTs making it a class one-two – albeit failing to better the German manufacturer’s benchmark from Saturday.

Harry Tincknell set the pace on Sunday afternoon with a best effort of 1m47.530s in the #67 car, while Olivier Pla put the #66 entry second with a time only 0.042s slower.

The two mid-engined works 911 RSRs were next, the #91 heading the #92, while James Calado’s #51 car headed up the Ferrari contingent in fifth.

Clearwater Racing set the quickest time in the GTE Am class, with Keita Sawa leading the way with a 1m50.271s in the #61 Ferrari 488 GTE.

shares
comments
Porsche stays on top in penultimate WEC test session

Previous article

Porsche stays on top in penultimate WEC test session

Next article

Kubica admits F1 "reminders" made circuit return difficult

Kubica admits F1 "reminders" made circuit return difficult
Load comments
How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks Prime

How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks

The screaming rotary-engined Mazda 787 is regarded as one of the most popular Le Mans 24 Hours-winning cars, but until its surprise success on this day 30 years ago it was never regarded as a likely victor. But that reckoned without a new technical partner, some canny political manoeuvring and a rival's bizarre self-inflicted weakness.

Le Mans
Jun 23, 2021
How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge kept Toyota clear Prime

How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge kept Toyota clear

Despite going stride for stride for pace at Portimao, Alpine’s grandfathered LMP1 couldn’t convert pole position into a sustained victory fight against Toyota. And due to rules and car limitations that are set in stone, the French manufacturer will be searching for solutions in its own battle of endurance.

WEC
Jun 14, 2021
Charting 100 world championship sportscar starts for Toyota Prime

Charting 100 world championship sportscar starts for Toyota

This weekend's Portimao 8 Hours round of the FIA World Endurance Championship marks the 100th world champion prototype start for Toyota. Here are the major milestones on the road to three figures since the earliest low-key days of its entry into the Group C arena nearly 40 years ago.

WEC
Jun 12, 2021
The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing Prime

The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing

Most of the column inches after the World Endurance Championship's opener were centred around the relative pace of the Hypercar class and the LMP2s, but there's another question that needs addressing in order for the new division to have a successful future

WEC
May 7, 2021
How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era Prime

How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era

Amid concerns that the new Hypercar class would be upstaged on debut by the spec LMP2 machines at Spa, Toyota delivered the pole and victory that the vast majority of observers expected. But neither car had a clean run, which gave the grandfathered Alpine LMP1 an unexpected shot at glory.

WEC
May 4, 2021
What to expect from sportscar racing's bold new Hypercar era Prime

What to expect from sportscar racing's bold new Hypercar era

A slim field of three cars will be entered in the Hypercar class for the first round of the World Endurance Championship's post-LMP1 age. But there are plenty of reasons for optimism with the new wave of manufacturer entries and competing class philosophies just around the corner

WEC
Apr 29, 2021
How Aston Martin scaled new heights in the Prodrive era Prime

How Aston Martin scaled new heights in the Prodrive era

The 2021 FIA World Endurance Championship kicks off at Spa this weekend, but for the first time since its 2012 inception there will be no factory-run Aston Martins in the GTE Pro class. That's especially notable because as a works entity, the Prodrive era of Aston Martin Racing that began in 2005 has been a success from the very start.

WEC
Apr 27, 2021
How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname Prime

How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname

Sportscar racing lost one of it's greatest talents 20 years ago today when Bob Wollek was knocked from his bicycle prior to the Sebring 12 Hours. The enigmatic Frenchman never won the Le Mans 24 Hours, but many still remember today why 'Brilliant Bob' became a legend

WEC
Mar 16, 2021