Smooth start for both Porsche 919 Hybrids in China
Intense set-up work for the two Porsche 919 Hybrids was the major task in the first free practice sessions at the Shanghai International Circuit. The Porsche team is preparing for the penultimate round of the 2015 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC), the six-hours of Shanghai which will start on Sunday at 11:00 hrs local time (04:00 CET).
The first two 90-minutes practice sessions went smoothly for both 919 Hybrids. Timo Bernhard (DE), Brendon Hartley (NZ) and Mark Webber (AU), sharing car number 17, came third in FP1 and set the fastest lap time of the day in FP2 (Webber, 1:45.111 minutes). In comparison: in 2014, Neel Jani had set the fastest lap time of the entire weekend in qualifying by lapping in 1:47.036 minutes. The number 17 trio is currently leading the drivers’ world championship by a single point ahead of the Audi car number 7 crew. The Porsche sister car of Romain Dumas (FR), Neel Jani (CH) and Marc Lieb (DE) was fourth fastest in the first practice session and came second in the afternoon. Track conditions were consistently dry with ambient temperatures of around 18 degrees Celsius.
Thanks to an advantage of a 53 point margin ahead of Audi in the constructors’ standings, mathematically Porsche could secure an early title win on Sunday in China. It would be the first Constructors’ World Championship title since 1986 for Porsche and the 13th in the brand’s endurance racing history.
“We have had a very smooth and positive first day,” said Mark. “Timo did a good long-run which is encouraging for the race. Brendon and I did shorter runs today. Our lap-times are a lot quicker than last year as they need to be because the Audi is still there and strong.”
Petraon October 31, 2015 Reply
Another great result Mark, very happy for you and the team.
Good luck for the race too. Wish I could be there with my Shangai MW fans. Big hug from Germany