Next stop 8hrs of Portimao for the FIA World Endurance Championship

Sunday, June 06, 2021


Second one first and first one second all means that this weekend coming is the second round of the 2021 FIA World Endurance Championship from Portimao in Portugal, the venue of the original opening date to season 9 of the Championship had something called COVID not got in the way of things again in April!!

Ultimately, it was a Prologue Test and an opening round at Spa Francorchamps at the beginning of May that finally got things underway for the WEC and what a week of low to high it was too for the TF Sport team! Welcoming in the two different GTE Am crews into the team for the 2021 season so nearly faltered before it had even started as an accident for both Ben Keating and then Satoshi Hoshino coming out of Eau Rouge in the morning session of the first day of the Prologue saw the #33 Keating car written off before the #777 D’Station Racing car sustained substantial damage after near identical crashes.

Tom Ferrier and his team haven’t got where they are by giving up easily and by lunch the next day, they had two functioning Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GTE’s at the disposal of their customer crews!!

Better was to come from the #33 car by the end of the first six hours of racing in that Keating (having first claimed GTE Am Pole position ) went on with co-drivers Dylan Pereira and Felipe Fraga to, and despite the attempts of many along the way to bring the car home P2 in Class for some well-earned points. The #777 was also to finish their first WEC race as an AMR racing concern, coming home just behind the Prodrive supported Northwest AMR GTE of Paul Dalla Lana, Augusto Farfus and Marcos Gomes in P7.

Now the WEC moves onto Portimao for the first time in their history and for an eight-hour event too. Spa was raced from behind closed doors and despite Portugal first opening up to tourists (certainly from the UK) again in June, this event is still not accessible to the paying public!!

The entry list for Portimao shows nothing different for the three Aston Martin runners from that of Spa with just Tomonobu Fujii and Andrew Watson joining team principle of D’Station Racing Satoshi Hoshino aboard the green #777 car with the three cars competing again within a field of thirteen GTE Am cars and a total grid of thirty-two cars.

The only identifiable change will be increased weight for the #33 car which receives a 'success ballast' of 20kg over its declared minimum base weight of 1247kg to 1267kg as a result of their podium finish at Spa,

Track action starts this Friday with the first of three available Free Practice sessions before Qualifying on Saturday evening with the start to the 8hrs of Portimao at 11:00hrs local on Sunday.

Photo credits – Adrenal Media / AMR / TF Sport
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