Toyota Gazoo Racing earned a one-two finish at its home race in Japan on Sunday as the 2017 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) inched closer to the season-ending Bapco 6 Hours of Bahrain.
An eventful and rain-affected 6 Hours of Fuji marked the seventh round of the nine-meeting season, and it was the trio of Sebastien Buemi, Anthony Davidson and Kazuki Nakajima who triumphed.
The result earned them their third race win of 2017 in their No. 8 TS050 Hybrid. It was also Toyota’s fifth victory in six events at Fuji Speedway.
Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez in the No. 7 car took second place on a day that the TS050 Hybrid showed its strong performance in wet conditions.
Rain intensified and fog descended on the track, causing several interruptions to the race. The heavy wet conditions and differing fuel strategies removed any advantage during safety cars, the final order of the podium was unpredictable throughout.
And with the 75 per cent mark approaching, after which full World Championship points would be awarded, more heavy fog came and another safety car was called.
“This is a great result for the team and also for our home fans here at Fuji; thanks to them for such great support, especially considering the weather,” said Buemi.
Neel Jani, Andre Lotterer and Nick Tandy of Porsche took the final place on the overall podium. All three were also the top three amongst LMP1 cars.
The LMP2 class was won by the trio of Julien Cana, Nicolas Prost and Bruno Senna of Vaillante Rebellion driving an Oreca/Gibson.
The LMGTE Pro category was claimed by James Calado and Alessandro Pier Guidi of AF Corse driving a Ferrari. Thomas Flohr, Francesco Castellacci and Miguel Molina of Spirit of Race, driving a Ferrari, won the LMGTE Am category.
The WEC now heads to the penultimate round of the season, the 6 Hours of Shanghai, on November 5.
It will then head to the FIA WEC Bapco 6 Hours of Bahrain at Bahrain International Circuit on November 17 and 18.
Tickets are now on sale at BD10 apiece for the two-day extravaganza, which will feature both top-class racing and off-track entertainment.
The weekend will also have more racing thrills aside from the WEC. Being held as part of the support programme are the MRF Challenge, the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East and the highly acclaimed World Series Formula V8 3.5.
For further information on the FIA WEC Bapco 6 Hours of Bahrain, or to make a booking in advance, visit www.bahraingp.com or call the BIC Hotline on +973-17-450000.