Friday, November 8, 2013 —
Toyota Racing will start the Six Hours of Shanghai from pole position after an impressive performance in qualifying for the penultimate round of the FIA World Endurance Championship.
The #7 of Alex Wurz and Nicolas Lapierre, winners last year in Shanghai, came out on top in qualifying by 0.089secs to earn top spot on the grid for tomorrow’s race.
Following a strong practice performance, the #8 of Anthony Davidson, Sébastien Buemi and Stéphane Sarrazin were also in the hunt for pole. Sébastien and Stéphane were the two nominated qualifiers and took third place.
Qualifying this year requires two drivers from each car to set a minimum of two flying laps each. The grid is decided by the combined average of each driver’s fastest two laps.
This week’s event is compressed into two days, meaning today featured a hectic programme with a pair of two-hour practice sessions preceding qualifying.
In opening practice Nicolas set the fastest time for the #7 to take fourth while Sébastien clocked the quickest lap in the sister car on its way to second.
Final practice suffered two red flag interruptions and was extended by 20 minutes as a result.
When the chequered flag fell, the #7 and #8 were in third and second thanks to laps from Alex and Stéphane respectively, but a penalty saw the #1 Audi’s time disallowed, promoting the TS030 HYBRIDs to the top of the timing sheets.