The Porsche LMP1 Team took the fifth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez in Mexico City in a dominant one-two finish. The championship leading Le Mans winners, Earl Bamber, Timo Bernhard and Brendon Hartley in the No.2 Porsche 919 Hybrid came in first ahead of their teammates Neel Jani, André Lotterer and Nick Tandy in the No.1 Porsche 919 Hybrid.
“The entire weekend was fantastic." said Bamber "The team gave us a great car and made our life very easy. In the race it was a shame that our sister car had a penalty because some close racing would have been nice. I was the second driver in the car and my double stint was straight forward.”
The No.1 Porsche stayed with the sister 919 Hybrid in the first phase of the race but lost momentum when they had to serve a drive through penalty after Nick Tandy was adjudged to have gone over the pit lane speed limit.
Said Tandy, “I did the double stint at the beginning and it was fine. We managed to get out in front together and work as a team. We were saving fuel a bit to offset our pit stops to avoid both cars pitting at the same time. Everything worked fine today except for the pit speed limit infringement.”
The pair of Toyota Gazoo Racing TS050 HYBRID LMP1 cars struggled to match the Porsches’ pace in the high altitude finishing third with the No.8 car of Sébastien Buemi, Anthony Davidson and Kazuki Nakajima. José-Maria Lopez, Kamui Kobayashi and Mike Conway were third for the majority of the race but came home in fourth place after a late unscheduled pit stop.
In LMP2 the No.31 Vaillante Rebellion ORECA 07 Gibson of Julien Canal, Nicolas Prost and Bruno Senna took the checkered flag 25 seconds ahead of the No.36 Signatech Alpine Matmut Alpine A470 Gibson of Nicolas Lapierre, Gustavo Menezes and André Negrão.
CEFC Manor TRS Racing finished third place finish.
In LMGTE Pro the No.95 Aston Martin Racing Vantage of Nicki Thiim and Marco Sørensen took their first victory after a race-long duel with the No.71 Ferrari 458 GTE of Davide Rigon and Sam Bird who had started from pole position. The AF Corse Ferrari crossed the finish line first but had a ten second penalty added to its result for a speeding infringement under a Full Course Yellow caution period. They were classified second in class, 9.1 seconds behind the Aston Martin.
Third in LMGTE Pro was the No.91 Porsche 911 RSR of Richard Lietz and Frédéric Makowiecki who battled through to take their fourth podium of the season, and in 4th was the No.67 Ford GT of Andy Priaulx and Harry Tincknell.
In LMGTE Am it was the No.77 Dempsey Proton Porsche 911 RSR of Christian Ried, Matteo Cairoli and Marvin Dienst who crossed the line to take their second consecutive class victory this year.
The No.98 Aston Martin trio of Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy and Mathias Lauda placed second after leading earlier in the race, while Gulf Racing took its first podium of the season as Ben Barker, Mike Wainwright and Nick Foster completed their best race of the 2017 season to date.
The next event on the 2017 FIA WEC schedule is at the Circuit of the Americas for the Lone Star Le Mans race on Saturday 16th September.
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