2018/2019 WEC Super Season

FLRacingFan

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Pietro Fittipaldi had a nasty incident through Eau Rouge/Raidillon in qualifying.
 

Doc Austin

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Toyota ran a 1m56.172s yesterday and Rebellion ran a 1m57.120s today. I don't know if we can compare those times because the conditions could have been different, but it is encouraging that now it seems much tighter. We all want a good race, right?

However, Toyota only turned a 1:57.939, so they are over a second slower than yesterday. This makes the picture a little less clear. Rebellion goes 1.5 seconds faster and Toyota loses 1.5 seconds overnight. Doesn't make sense, but you can't rule out sandbagging. I don't think we will know anything for sure until a couple of hours in on Sunday.

Rebellion might be in the fight, but the rest of the privateers are over a second behind them, but delightfully close to the lead Toyota. The Bykolles looks truly hopeless.

Sadly it looks like Ginettas again ran only one lap, and I fear they may not answer the bell tomorrow. That would be a sad loss because we don't have enough cars now. I hope the can pull it together and have a good race Sunday,
 

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Saying fractures to both legs, I hope its better than what's being reported. Hate it to hear this happening to Pietro.

Hope it doesn’t set his IndyCar career back...man, Coyne needs to figure out more replacement strategies. Goodness.
 

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Hope it doesn’t set his IndyCar career back...man, Coyne needs to figure out more replacement strategies. Goodness.

Man, this poor guy has had some ferocious accidents. Let's just hope it's stress fractures and not actual breaks, or better still it's just some nasty bruising..

I would not worry about Coyne too much. He's got ride buyers lining up around the corner around at the shop. That's a damm good, solidly engineered car too. Whomever gets it is going to be fast.
 

Doc Austin

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Damm, worse Than was hoping............Pietro Fittipaldi breaks both legs in Spa WEC qualifying crash

However they are reporting it is not life threatening. Also, they are saying "suspected broken legs" and this leads me to believe at least they are not compound fractures. You would see that right away with no speculation.

Sadly, this is turning out to be a clusterfart operation. I don't believe Dragon speed has spare, so they could be out for weekend. If Ginetta doesn't get to run that takes the privateer ranks down to six. Not the best way to start a new super season.

Pretty nasty hit. Hate to think what would have happened if that was a 917 or something, or even a 956.


 

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WEC Spa: Conway and Kobayashi take pole, Alonso and Nakajima second




752a1183364a83e06d5ab9aaf077885d.jpg




Rebellion back a disappointing 1.842s off the lead Toyota, but we were almost expecting that.


Results
Pos Driver Team Gap
1 M.Conway, K.Kobayashi, J.M.Lopez Toyota Gazoo Racing 1m54.583s
2 S.Buemi, K.Nakajima, F.Alonso Toyota Gazoo Racing 0.379s
3 N.Jani, A.Lotterer, B.Senna Rebellion Racing 1.842s
4 M.Beche, T.Laurent, G.Menezes Rebellion Racing 2.409s
5 M.Aleshin, V.Petrov SMP Racing 3.664s
6 O.Webb, D.Kraihamer, T.Dillmann ByKOLLES Racing Team 4.114s













 

FLRacingFan

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Damm, worse Than was hoping............Pietro Fittipaldi breaks both legs in Spa WEC qualifying crash

However they are reporting it is not life threatening. Also, they are saying "suspected broken legs" and this leads me to believe at least they are not compound fractures. You would see that right away with no speculation.

Sadly, this is turning out to be a clusterfart operation. I don't believe Dragon speed has spare, so they could be out for weekend. If Ginetta doesn't get to run that takes the privateer ranks down to six. Not the best way to start a new super season.

Pretty nasty hit. Hate to think what would have happened if that was a 917 or something, or even a 956.



Saw someone else point this out, I hadn't noticed until I looked at it again. The commentary were talking about the car bottoming out and maybe sending it out of control, but the front lights flickered around the 13- or 14-second mark in this video. Did the car lose power momentarily? That is scary stuff.
 

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Doc Austin

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Saw someone else point this out, I hadn't noticed until I looked at it again. The commentary were talking about the car bottoming out and maybe sending it out of control, but the front lights flickered around the 13- or 14-second mark in this video. Did the car lose power momentarily? That is scary stuff.

Hard to say without actually being in the car but it looked like the tail stepped out, he corrected and then couldn't get it turned back. There was enough smoke coming off the tires that they were probably locked and that's why it would not turn. Whether or not it bottomed I can't say, but I did not see any sparks.
 
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Doc Austin

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Manor have this problem wherever they go apparently.

Except they do ok in P2, and that's because the rules package makes financial sense. Imagine how many P2 cars would show up if they were racing as the top class.

I think the Ginetta is a fundamentally good car, but they need to get it in the hands of some reliable customers.

It's not a bad looking car either, but that's no good if they don't run it. Reliable customers are not going to come in if the best they can tell potential sponsors is that they will be racing for second place.

Manor says this weekend's problems will not effect their Lemans entry, but if they don't find some money I don't know how they can pull it off.

At least Rebellion (particularly) and SMP are solid operations.

Sadly that's only four cars (five if Dragon Speed can get repaired in time) against the world's largest auto maker. I'm pretty sure there is no sense in counting Bykolles. They are going to be buried in the P2 pack so it's hard to count them as P1 contenders.

We could be facing a seven car Lemans field, but that's better than last year's five. I really do want to be optimistic, but this weekend is like a gut punch.
 

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Surprisingly, Toyota's pole time today was only a tenth quicker than their quickest time last year, and their quickest race lap turned out to be about three seconds slower at 1:57.8. They weren't very quick in FP3, so I'm thinking qualifying was more indicative of what they can do deploying all the energy they can in one lap and not having to conserve fuel.
 

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Surprisingly, Toyota's pole time today was only a tenth quicker than their quickest time last year, and their quickest race lap turned out to be about three seconds slower at 1:57.8. They weren't very quick in FP3, so I'm thinking qualifying was more indicative of what they can do deploying all the energy they can in one lap and not having to conserve fuel.

They might not be faster this year because they BOPed them. The rules are so complex I have given up trying to keep track. I hope you are right they will be slower in the race. If Toyota is going to win this, want them to earn it, and they deserve that too

Kind of off topic, but they have a huge P2 field in the ELMS. Lots cl pictures here from the 6hr race at Paul Richard..... http://www.dailysportscar.com/2018/04/15/paul-ricard-finish-order-in-pictures-2.html
 

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I guarantee you that Toyota wasn't cheating. Imagine the embarrassment of getting caught cheating against a bunch of teams no one outside of fan even know exist. They just got it wrong and used too much fuel. Penalizing them an entire lap on a circuit as long as Spa is simply draconian and pretty much what we have come to expect from the little napolians running the FIA.

However, now we have something useful even if they can't see it. If that Toyota can beat even one of the privateers, we head into Lemans knowing the BOP is so far off it can't be anything but a fix.
 

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Sounds like power steering cut out on Pietro. It did look pretty bizarre.

***The official cause of the accident has not been communicated, although it’s suspected to be a power steering-related issue. It is the second bone-breaking accident for the Dallara-built BR1, which makes its competition debut tomorrow, with Mikhail Aleshin having sustained a broken arm in a testing accident at Motorland Aragon in November.
http://sportscar365.com/lemans/wec/spa-friday-notebook-8/
 

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Really bummed for Fittipaldi. Sounds like he won’t be competing in the 500 now.
 

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Another bad one at Eau Rouge/Raidillon. Looks like another mechanical issue.

 

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You have to get near the end and you can see the footbox stayed intact. The survival cell did it's job.




Seeing tarps after accidents is always terrifying.


On a brighter note: the equipment Alonso drove finally did not fail him! Congrats to Nando!!!!
 

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I want to be the first to say congratulations to Fernando Alonso for finally getting the win, his first win in any motorsport discipline in nearly five years!
 

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Hats off to Toyota on their brilliant 1-2 at Spa, as well.
 

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I want to be the first to say congratulations to Fernando Alonso for finally getting the win, his first win in any motorsport discipline in nearly five years!
Good lord, I couldn't believe it when I saw it's been that long!

Any doubt about the BOP being bonkers now?
I think EoT was alright, especially for a bunch of new cars in the class. The two Rebellions and one of the SMPs actually had the top three best Sector 2 times, so they're good in the twisty bits. Toyota have good hybrid punch out of La Source, the chicane, and turn 16 for better Sectors 1 and 3 times. The released energy formula actually won't give Toyota as much hybrid energy relative to track length (8 MJ/lap) at Le Mans as they got at Spa (~6.5 MJ/lap) so it should be closer even if the nonhybrids weren't develop/tested over the next month or so.
 

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I hope are right, but the Toyotas blew everybody out the entire weekend and won by two laps. They also had a lead of over minute erased by yellow flags, twice, so it might just be worse than it looks. It's hard to believe Lemans is going to be much different. I'll remain hopeful, of course, even if that did not help much this weekend.

The rules have gotten to be so complex that you have to figure energy storage and deployment, and refueling times and equalizing race distance speeds by having different maximum stint lengths for different cars. I remember when we just ran the **** out of the cars and whomever covered the most distance won. Now if you have a clerical error on your metering unit you get kicked off the pole and docked a lap. Rebellion lost their podium over something similar, as if Toyota needed even more help in winning the championship. As such, we won't know how big of an advantage or deficit anyone is going to have until they actually drop the tri-color, but if they leave the BOP alone it could be and ugly race for the privateers.

But hey, I'm going to remain hopeful. I enjoyed just watching the cars go around, but I hope we have a competitive Lemans.

Sadly I read that Dragon Speed does not currently know what they are going to do because that chassis was destroyed. Read between the lines and that means they could possibly miss Lemans. Also, the BR1 that crashed in the late stages was supposedly "destroyed," so that entry might be in jeopardy too. Finally, who the hell knows what's going to happen with the Ginetta cars? There might be more drama in who does or doesn't make it than the actual race, but I hope am wrong.
 

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One very positive note on the weekend is how well the Racing Netherlands entry ran. They ran unsuccessfully in ELMS last year, but were in control of this race until a mechanical problem set them back. This is a Dallara chassis, which was not very good last year. The FIA gave all the chassis makers except Oreca a joker, and it looks like Dallara made the most of theirs. I'm sure the Oreca are less than happy about this, but it's good news there is other competitive choice.

Well, that and I like yellow cars.

Fresh from Daily sportscars is the finishing order in pictures:

http://www.dailysportscar.com/2018/05/05/6h-spa-finish-order-in-pictures.html

fia-wec-2018-spa-finish-order-29.jpg
 

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Also, the Bykolles exceeded almost everyone's expectation and was actually racing one of the BR1 cars on merit. With Lemans looking to be a real endurance race, they could feature, and maybe pull off a rocky style win if the race is bizarre enough. Their Nissan motor, believe, is a development of the GTR motor and it's been really reliable.

The only thing we know about any of these cars is they will run six hours. Even at that, Alonso was fighting an overheat gearbox, so I believe we are set for 24 hours of attrition. Come on, Jackie Chan!

Please, give these guys a joker so they can fix that hideous nose. Outside of that it's a decent looking car.

fia-wec-2018-spa-finish-order-05.jpg
 

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Forgetting about BOP for a minute, there was still spectacularly bad news this weekend. The Ginettas only turned a couple of laps and did not even start due to finances. They say the will be at Lemans, but then again they said they would be at Spa. If they can't get that squared away, they could very well DNS Lemans and maybe the rest of the season. The Ginetta is a good looking car, I hope they can race them. The new Ginetta P3 cars has also won some of the opening races in Asia, so we might be looking at the beginning of a new elite manufacturer. I hope the team pulls it together so they have that chance.

Also the Dragon Speed chassis was destroyed, as was one of the BR1s. The BR1 is probably safe assuming they can get another chassis in time, but Dragon Speed is saying they don't know what they are going to do.

The ACO has some P2 teams standing by to fill the Lemans field if necessary, but I hope we can get all 10 of the current P1 cars on to the grid.

In all, it was an ok weekend, but with 3 DNS, a P1 DQ, and a Toyota blowout, I'm hoping Lemans turns into twilight zone race that gives us a shock winner.
 

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Good lord, I couldn't believe it when I saw it's been that long!


I think EoT was alright, especially for a bunch of new cars in the class. The two Rebellions and one of the SMPs actually had the top three best Sector 2 times, so they're good in the twisty bits. Toyota have good hybrid punch out of La Source, the chicane, and turn 16 for better Sectors 1 and 3 times. The released energy formula actually won't give Toyota as much hybrid energy relative to track length (8 MJ/lap) at Le Mans as they got at Spa (~6.5 MJ/lap) so it should be closer even if the nonhybrids weren't develop/tested over the next month or so.
Me neither. The length of time that has passed since he last won just goes to show how much of a disgrace McLaren-Honda was. With this being Fernando Alonso that we are talking about, though, I am sure he will make up for the lack of wins in due course. Winning at Spa in your WEC debut is not a bad way to start off on a triumphant journey.

Fun fact: Fernando Alonso has never won at Spa in Formula One, but he has done so in International Formula 3000 and the World Endurance Championship.
 

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Forgetting about BOP for a minute, there was still spectacularly bad news this weekend. The Ginettas only turned a couple of laps and did not even start due to finances. They say the will be at Lemans, but then again they said they would be at Spa. If they can't get that squared away, they could very well DNS Lemans and maybe the rest of the season. The Ginetta is a good looking car, I hope they can race them. The new Ginetta P3 cars has also won some of the opening races in Asia, so we might be looking at the beginning of a new elite manufacturer. I hope the team pulls it together so they have that chance.

Also the Dragon Speed chassis was destroyed, as was one of the BR1s. The BR1 is probably safe assuming they can get another chassis in time, but Dragon Speed is saying they don't know what they are going to do.

The ACO has some P2 teams standing by to fill the Lemans field if necessary, but I hope we can get all 10 of the current P1 cars on to the grid.

In all, it was an ok weekend, but with 3 DNS, a P1 DQ, and a Toyota blowout, I'm hoping Lemans turns into twilight zone race that gives us a shock winner.
I don't think it would be particularly bold to say the Manors won't be at Le Mans. When you get the funding pulled out from under you suddenly that's hard to recover from, with less than a month to Le Mans Test Day. That sucks.

The SMP BR1 that crashed at Eau Rouge towards the end of the race may be a goner too, so that's two BR1s that would have to be built up. A lot of work for Dallara and BR Engineering, but I think they can get it done in time.
 
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