This weekend the new season of the WEC, already sixth after the revival in 2012. Traditionally, the world Cup opens hour race at Silverstone.
In anticipation of the new season, the championship touched on some changes from the LMP1 class went legendary team Audi, and the private Rebellion moved into the second category, prototypes.
But everyone is looking forward to the duel Porsche and Toyota, the LMP2 class is again filled with carriages, and in GTE Pro from the four brands represented by factory teams.
As already mentioned, the main category prototypes thinned. Instead of five teams and nine of the crews were only three teams and five cars, and of these only four factory prototype. In Le Mans there will be five due to the third request of Toyota.
Yes, the Audi care is definitely a negative point for the world Cup, especially because they were truly a legendary team. But we expect an interesting duel Porsche vs Toyota. Both teams have seriously updated the prototypes. And, judging by the reviews on the teams and the results of “Prologue”, we are waiting for an interesting fight.
Some of the rules in the class have changed. The FIA and ACO continue to struggle with rising speeds and therefore the rules on aerodynamics have been slightly modified. In particular, the height of the front splitter is raised to 15 mm, and the rear diffuser has already become.
All this is intended to slow the cars in corners for security purposes. But in Le Mans the lap time should be slower by 3-4 seconds.
In addition, it is now permitted to use only two aerodynamic body kit for the season and not three like last year.
Available to riders in the six-hour race this year will be less tires. Each crew will be available only to four sets of slicks for the qualification and race instead of six as it was last year.
No. 1 Neal Jani, Andre Lotterer, Nick Tandy
No. 2 Timo Bernhard Earl Bamber, Brendon Hartley
The defending Champions and winners of Le Mans are going to defend their titles and the status of winners of the prestigious marathon. But perhaps you are the winners of Le Mans and the world Cup is only Neil Jani. Roman Dumas and Marc Lieb left the team after the season.
The team joins the former informal leader of the team Audi – three-time Le Mans winner and world champion 2012 Andre Lotterer. The company in the first crew he and Neal Jani will be one of the winners of the 24 hours of Le Mans 2015 – Nick Tandy.
Another winner of Le Mans 2015 – Earl Bamber – will become a new partner of Bernhard and Hartley, and will replace the retired Mark Webber.
The Porsche 919 HYBRID is an evolution of last year’s prototype. The monocoque is the same, the philosophy of the power plant has not changed, but about 60-70 percent of the cars were modified.
Front part of the prototype tried to be less aerodynamically sensitive. Including to avoid last year’s problems with the loss of clamping force when the nose cone jammed a lot of worms from rubber.
It has been refined and improved many of the components of the chassis and powerplant. Updated software, in particular the work of the traction control and management system hybrid, all of which help to optimize the flow of rubber.
The concept has not changed, the prototype is still installed turbo gasoline engine 2.0 V4 and two systems of energy recovery – kinetic and thermal.
The total capacity of the power plant prototype is about 1000 HP
No. 7 – Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi, Jose-Maria Lopez.
No. 8 – Sebastien Buemi, Anthony Davidson, Kazuki Nakajima
No. 9 – stéphane Sarrazin, Yuji Kunimoto, Nicolas lyaper (only 6 hours of Spa and 24 hours of Le Mans).
Toyota’s new season presents one main goal – to win the marathon “24 hours of Le Mans”, the victory in which a year ago, literally escaped from the hands of the Japanese team in the last minutes of the race. It was a very bitter moment for the team.
In the compositions of the main crew is not much change. Place Carrazana is Pechito Lopez, in this year who competes in Formula E. For three-time world champion in the touring it will be a completely new experience.
The biggest change will certainly be the third crew of the Japanese team at Spa and Le Mans. Here we will see Carrazana, the defending champion Japanese “Superformula” Yuji Kunimoto and Nicolas Leeper, WEС the current champion and winner of Le Mans in the LMP2 class.
Lyaper returns to the team after his services declined during 2014.
If we talk about the new version of the Toyota TS050, after last year’s revolution this time the team made only evolution, revising and optimizing the aerodynamics of the hybrid component and suspension geometry to reduce the consumption of tires.
In the prototype petrol engine twin-turbo, 2.4 V6, in this configuration, the team moved a year ago, and is also equipped with two recovery systems kinetic energy: on the front and on the rear axle. The capacity of the prototype is also about 1000 HP In this regard nothing has changed, but as we wrote above, the system has improved.
The Japanese are determined, the prototype has completed over 30,000 km of tests, including several 30-hour endurance tests. They left the prologue, took first place.
No. 4 – Oliver Webb, Dominic Krahmer, James Rossiter
The prologue for the team was a failure: the technical problems involved only in the third session of tests on Saturday and missed Sunday. An updated prototype ENSO CLM P1/0 with Nissan motor NISMO doesn’t look too new and problems with it very much.
Robert Kubica, who was supposed to debut in the WEC in that crew, have refused to appearances. Just yesterday as teammates Webb were confirmed Dominic Krahmer and James Rossiter.
Season only this year a private team in LMP1 is going to be hard. No rivals, the technique is yet not working properly.
Category LMP2 this year has changed. And unwittingly became monoclass. This has both pros and cons. On the one hand, technology would not be the deciding factor that will win the best team with the best pilots. Although from the technical issues, of course, no one is immune.
On the other, we have already lost so loved the confrontation between Ligier and Oreca, and will not see the handsome prototype of the BR01.
This is partly due to regulations and partly with the selection of the teams.
First, now, according to the rules, all have the same motor – Gibson GK428 4.2 L V8 with 600 horsepower Machine will be more powerful at 150 horsepower.
But on the part of the chassis was a choice of 07 Oreca, Ligier JS P217 P217 and Dallara. All these machines are presented in the ELMS, and all we will see at Le Mans, but on most stages WEC LMP2 will be presented only the chassis Oreca 07.
The Oreca brand is very well established in recent years, moreover, the teams that are already acting on their technique, it was enough to make the “upgrade” chassis, which is much cheaper.
But representatives of the Ligier and Dallara were poor marketers. They need success at Le Mans, to improve sales.
In most of the races we will see ten of the prototypes in the framework of the six teams.
The championship had temporarily left the team SMP Racing, but they’ll be back in 2018 with the new creation of companies and Dallara Engineering BR – BR1. And it will be within the LMP1 class.
No. 13 mate Besh, David Heinemeier-Hanssen, Nelson Piquet Jr.
No. 31 Julien Canal, Nicolas Prost, Bruno Senna
Familiar to all team Rebellion’m tired of fighting with myself in LMP1-L and went to the second category of prototypes in the WEC and IMSA. They have strong pilots. The development of new, slightly more simple technique should work without problems, still waiting for good results from the well-known team.
No. 24 Tor Graves, Jonathan Irshi, Jean-Eric Vergne
No. 25 Vitaly Petrov, Roberto Gonzalez, Simon Trummer
The Manor team last year made a successful debut in the WEC and this year intends to develop its success. A year ago the team’s performance was unstable, had some UPS and downs, but now after gaining experience, the team has a chance to be among the favorites.
This team will be the center of attention of the Russian fans, especially the crew of the No. 25, which will be the SMP Racing programme pilot, Vitaly Petrov. In nursing crew is another former F1 driver Jean-Eric Vergne.
No. 26 – Roman Rusinov, Pierre There, Alex Lynn
Champions 2015, the Russian team G-Drive Racing, this year will again be to act in the world championship. The main goal is to win at Le Mans. The team again changed the technical partner, which this year will be team TDS.
One crew Novel by Rusinova will perform Pierre There, two-time winner of the podium at Le Mans, and Alex Lynn in the past collaborated with the Williams team in Formula 1.
No. 28 – Francois Perrodo, Matthieu Maxifier, Emmanuel Kollar
In fact, the nursing crew of G-Drive Racing. Emmanuel Kollar returns to the LMP2 class after winning the title in GTAm. His partner will continue Perrodo, with whom they became Champions in GTAm when their third partner crew was Rui Aguas.
They will be young talent Matthieu maxifier, familiar to all who in recent years watched the youth Championships.
No. 35, Nelson Panciatici, Pierre Rugg, Andre Negro
No. 36 Nicolas Lyaper, Gustavo Menezes, Matthew RAO
The defending Champions and winners of Le Mans in LMP2 want to repeat the success this year. They will be performing at branded Oreca chassis 07 – Apline A470.
Lapiere and Menezes new partner. Stephen Riquelme, who returned to race GT3, will replace Matthew Before, a year ago advocated Manor.
He Lyaper will hold two races in the top LMP1 class in the Toyota in Spa and Le Mans will take its place in the novel Dumas, one of the current world Champions and winners of Le Mans in the main class.
At Silverstone the team will be represented only by the crew of the No. 36, a second car will appear in the Spa. Nelson Panciatici, who missed the end of last season, returns to the crew of No. 35.
No. 37 David Chang, Alex Brandl, Tristan, Commande
No. 38 Ho-Pin Tung, Oliver Jarvis, Thomas Laurent
The movie star Jackie Chan to a new level. A year ago, partly owned by the crew of the No. 35 team in Alpine, now he puts his team of two cars in partnership with Jota.
Team Jota has long established itself as one of the best teams in the second class of prototypes endurance racing, and Jackie Chan very good pilots, which includes the former pilot Audi LMP1, Oliver Jarvis.
In the GT Pro class this year will be four factory teams. To Ferrari, Ford and Aston Martin rejoins the factory team Porsche. New model Porsche 911 RSR was the mid-engine, which is very unusual for a German brand. This allowed us to optimize the weight distribution of the car and make more effective work of the diffuser.
In this category are expected to close. Much will depend on BoP (balance of power). This year it will take a special “smart” system. But how smart is she really? The questions in this part definitely will appear throughout the season.
Ferrari 488 GTE
No. 51 James Calado, Alessandro Pier Guidi
No. 71 Of Davide Rigon, Sam Bird
No. 66 Stefan Mucke, Olivier PLA, Billy Johnson
No. 67 Andy Priaulx, Harry Tincknell, Pipo Derani
Porsche 911 RSR
The No. 91 Of Richard Lietz, Frederic Makowiecki
No. 92 Mikkel Christensen, Kevin Estre
Aston Martin Vantage
No. 95 Niki TIIM, Marco Sorensen, Richie Stanaway
No. 97 Of Darren Turner, Johnny Adam, Daniel Serra
The GT class Am slightly thinned. For the second year in a row the category leave the current Champions. At Silverstone in this class will perform five cars. Among the main players continues to be Aston Martin’s No. 98 and team Proton. Can make a surprise Ferrari and No. 54 teams Spirit Of Race (AF-Corse approx.)
Ferrari 488 GTE
No. 54 Thomas Flohr, Francesco Castellacci, Miguel Molina.
Ferrari 488 GTE
No. 61 , Weng Sun MOK, Keita Sawa, Matt Griffin
Porsche 911 RSR
No. 77 Christian Reed, He Cairoli, Marvin Dienst
Porsche 911 RSR
86 – Michael Wainwright, Ben Barker, Nick Foster
Aston Martin Vantage
98 – Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy, Mathias Lauda
16 April – 6 hours of Silverstone
06 may – 6 hours of Spa
June 17-18 24 hours of Le Mans
July 16 – 6 hours of nürburgring
03 September – 6 hours Mexico city
16 September – 6 hours of Austin
15 October – 6 hours of Fuji
05 November – 6 hours of Shanghai
18 November – 6 hours of Bahrain
This year on Russian television, the world championship racing endurance will continue to broadcast the channel Eurosport 1. Stream the final hours of the first stage of the season, the race “6 hours of Silverstone”, will start on Sunday at 19:00 Moscow time.
The first hours of the race can be viewed when you subscribe to Eurosport Player or on the official app of the FIA WEC.
Vladimir Bashmakov specifically for Autosportlive
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