Hartley, Bamber, Bernhard win WEC title

The #2 Porsche 919 of Timo Bernhard, Earl Bamber, and Brendon Hartley

New Zealanders Brendon Hartley and Earl Bamber and German Timo Bernard have won the 2017 FIA World Endurance Championship by finishing second in Shanghai.

The #8 Toyota TS050 of Sebastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima, and Anthony Davidson won the race by over a lap, but the #2 Porsche 919 trio have an unassailable 32-point championship lead with a total of 26 on offer in the final round in Bahrain.

A podium position for the #1 Porsche 919 of Andre Lotterer, Neel Jani, and Nick Tandy also locked up the manufacturers’ championship for Porsche.

Hartley, Bernhard and Bamber were already on course to seal the drivers’ crown with third place when race leader Jose Maria Lopez was involved in an incident that sent the #7 Toyota TS050 into the pits for repairs and promoted the #2 Porsche to second.

The diagnosis for Car #7 was damaged left-rear suspension.

While the incident for the Toyota Lopez shared with Kamui Kobayashi and Mike Conway cost the Japanese marque a one-two, it did give Car #8 a clear run to the victory that had looked likely for the majority of the six-hour race.

Buemi, on new tyres, was closing down on Lopez and less than two seconds behind when the leader tagged the #91 GTE Pro class Porsche driven by Richard Lietz in Turn 3.

The Swiss had just taken second place from Nick Tandy in the #1 Porsche when race leader Lopez spun after contact with WEC debutant Nico Muller in the G-Drive LMP2 ORECA in the opening hour.

The #8 Toyota was in the ascendency for the rest of the race, though different tyre strategies meant it was behind when the sister car hit problems.

The Toyota TS050s, which incorporated new developments for this weekend, had a clear edge over the Porsches around the Shanghai International Circuit.

Both 919s were a lap down after four hours of the race.

Tandy/Jani/Lotterer had the faster of the two Porsches in China, but an engine sensor issue in the opening hour resulted in more than a minute lost.

Lotterer, however, was only 20s behind Bernhard at the finish.

Repairs to the #7 Toyota cost it seven laps and left it down in fourth at the chequered flag.

Rebellion drivers Bruno Senna, Nicolas Prost and Julien Canal took victory in LMP2 to claim the championship lead with one race to go.

Senna had dominated the opening hour and a half of the race in the #13 ORECA-Gibson, but had to come from behind to take victory and the points lead from the #38 Jackie Chan DC Racing entry.

The Brazilian passed Ho-Pin Tung for the lead with just under an hour to go at the end of an eventful race for the Chan/DC car the Chinese driver shared with Oliver Jarvis and Thomas Laurent.

Tung had two incidents not of his making that resulted in spins, being tagged by Ben Hanley in the #24 Manor entry and then Muller in the G-Drive car.

Tung dropped behind Nicolas Lapierre in the Alpine Signatech ORECA and then Nelson Piquet Jr in the second Rebellion entry, fourth place leaving the long-time championship leaders four points behind Senna and his team-mates.

Andy Priaulx and Harry Tincknell claimed GTE Pro honours after a prolonged battle with the #91 Porsche 911 RSR that Lietz shared with Frederic Makowiecki.

Priaulx was able to pass Frenchman Makowiecki for the lead in the fourth hour and then Tincknell fought a successful rearguard action against Lietz prior to his hit from Lopez.

The Porsche faded in the final laps after the contact, ending up nine seconds down at the finish.

Behind them, third place for James Caldao and Alessandro Pier Guidi was enough for Ferrari to clinch the GT manufacturers’ spoils.

Porsche looked on course for victory with the sister car driven by Kevin Estre and Michael Christensen.

They had a clear edge on both their team-mates and the rest of the field, only for engine issues to put the car out early in the third hour.

Aston Martin drivers Pedro Lamy, Mathias Lauda and Paul Dalla Lana had an easy run to victory in GTE Am from early in the second hour.

Their two closest rivals, the Spirit of Race and Clearwater Ferraris, lost time in the same incident involving the second of the Chan/DC ORECAs.

Australian Nick Foster therefore took second in GTE Am class in the Gulf Racing Porsche 911 RSR he shared with Ben Barker and Khalid Al-Qubaisi.

The ninth and final round is the 6 Hours of Bahrain on November 16-18.

Video: Race highlights

Race results: 6 Hours of Shanghai

Pos Car # Car Team Drivers Laps Race time/split to lead Class Class pos
1 8 Toyota TS050 – Hybrid Toyota Gazoo Racing Buemi/Davidson/Nakajima 195 6:00:40.777 LMP1 1
2 2 Porsche 919 Hybrid Porsche LMP Team Bernhard/Bamber/Hartley 194 +1 Lap LMP1 2
3 1 Porsche 919 Hybrid Porsche LMP Team Jani/Lotterer/Tandy 194 +1 Lap LMP1 3
4 7 Toyota TS050 – Hybrid Toyota Gazoo Racing Conway/Kobayashi/Lopez 188 +7 Laps LMP1 4
5 31 Oreca 07 – Gibson Vaillante Rebellion Canal/Prost/Senna 183 +12 Laps LMP2 1
6 36 Alpine A470 – Gibson Signatech Alpine Matmut Lapierre/Menezes/Negrão 183 +12 Laps LMP2 2
7 13 Oreca 07 – Gibson Vaillante Rebellion Beche/Heinemeier Hansson/Piquet Jr 182 +13 Laps LMP2 3
8 38 Oreca 07 – Gibson Jackie Chan DC Racing Tung/Jarvis/Laurent 182 +13 Laps LMP2 4
9 25 Oreca 07 – Gibson CEFC Manor TRS Racing Gonzalez/Trummer/Petrov 182 +13 Laps LMP2 5
10 28 Oreca 07 – Gibson TDS Racing Perrodo/Vaxiviere/Collard 182 +13 Laps LMP2 6
11 26 Oreca 07 – Gibson G-Drive Racing Rusinov/Roussel/Muller 181 +14 Laps LMP2 7
12 37 Oreca 07 – Gibson Jackie Chan DC Racing Cheng/Brundle/Gommendy 181 +14 Laps LMP2 8
13 24 Oreca 07 – Gibson CEFC Manor TRS Racing Rao/Hanley/Vergne 181 +14 Laps LMP2 9
14 67 Ford GT Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK Priaulx/Tincknell 170 +25 Laps LMGTE Pro 1
15 91 Porsche 911 RSR Porsche GT Team Lietz/Makowiecki 170 +25 Laps LMGTE Pro 2
16 51 Ferrari 488 GTE AF Corse Calado/Pier Guidi 170 +25 Laps LMGTE Pro 3
17 66 Ford GT Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK Mücke/Pla 170 +25 Laps LMGTE Pro 4
18 95 Aston Martin Vantage Aston Martin Racing Thiim/Sørensen 170 +25 Laps LMGTE Pro 5
19 71 Ferrari 488 GTE AF Corse Rigon/Bird 170 +25 Laps LMGTE Pro 6
20 97 Aston Martin Vantage Aston Martin Racing Turner/Adam 170 +25 Laps LMGTE Pro 7
21 98 Aston Martin V8 Vantage Aston Martin Racing Dalla Lana/Lamy/Lauda 166 +29 Laps LMGTE Am 1
22 86 Porsche 911 RSR (991) Gulf Racing UK Al Qubaisi/Barker/Foster 165 +30 Laps LMGTE Am 2
23 77 Porsche 911 RSR (991) Dempsey – Proton Racing Ried/Cairoli/Dienst 164 +31 Laps LMGTE Am 3
24 61 Ferrari 488 GTE Clearwater Racing Mok/Sawa/Griffin 158 +37 Laps LMGTE Am 4
DNF 92 Porsche 911 RSR Porsche GT Team Christensen/Estre 65 LMGTE Pro DNF
DNF 54 Ferrari 488 GTE Spirit of Race Flohr/Castellacci/Molina 37 LMGTE Am DNF

World Endurance Drivers’ Championship

Pos Driver Nat Pts
1 Brendon Hartley NZL 190
1 Earl Bamber NZL 190
1 Timo Bernhard DEU 190
2 Kazuki Nakajima JPN 158
2 Sébastien Buemi CHE 158
3 Anthony Davidson GBR 143
4 André Lotterer DEU 113
4 Neel Jani CHE 113
4 Nick Tandy GBR 113
5 Kamui Kobayashi JPN 91.5
5 Mike Conway GBR 91.5
6 Ho-Pin Tung CHN 74.5
6 Oliver Jarvis GBR 74.5
6 Thomas Laurent FRA 74.5
7 Jose Maria Lopez ARG 72.5
8 Bruno Senna BRA 66
8 Julien Canal FRA 66
9 André Negrão BRA 58.5
10 Gustavo Menezes USA 58.5
11 Nicolas Prost FRA 58
12 Nicolas Lapierre FRA 56
13 Alex Brundle GBR 36.5
13 David Cheng CHN 36.5
13 Tristan Gommendy FRA 36.5
14 Matthew Rao GBR 34
15 Jean-Eric Vergne FRA 32
16 Stéphane Sarrazin FRA 26
17 Nelson Panciatici FRA 24.5
17 Pierre Ragues FRA 24.5
18 Jonathan Hirschi CHE 23
18 Tor Graves GBR 23
19 David Heinemeier Hansson DNK 21.5
19 Mathias Beche CHE 21.5
20 Nelson Piquet Jr BRA 17.5
21 Roman Rusinov RUS 17
22 Pierre Thiriet FRA 16.5
23 Emmanuel Collard FRA 15
23 François Perrodo FRA 15
24 Matthieu Vaxiviere FRA 14.5
25 Alex Lynn GBR 14.5
26 Romain Dumas FRA 12.5
27 Ben Hanley GBR 11
28 Yuji Kunimoto JPN 10
29 James Rossiter GBR 9
30 Dominik Kraihamer AUT 8.5
30 Oliver Webb GBR 8.5
31 Filipe Albuquerque PRT 8
32 Roberto Gonzalez MEX 5
32 Simon Trummer CHE 5
32 Vitaly Petrov RUS 5
33 Jose Gutierrez MEX 4
33 Memo Rojas MEX 4
33 Ryo Hirakawa JPN 4
34 Luis Felipe Derani BRA 4
35 Marco Bonanomi ITA 0.5
35 Roberto Merhi ESP 0.5
36 Léo Roussel FRA 0.5
36 Nico Muller CHE 0.5

World Endurance Manufacturers’ Championship

Pos Manufacturer Pts
1 Porsche 303
2 Toyota 249.5

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