Toyota finishes WEC preseason test on top

The #8 Toyota was fastest over 5 sessions
The #8 Toyota was fastest over 5 sessions

Toyota returnee Nicolas Lapierre ensured the Japanese manufacturer finished the World Endurance Championship prologue test at Monza on top with a fast lap early in Sunday afternoon's session.

Lapierre, who will rejoin Toyota for the Spa and Le Mans 24 Hours WEC races this year, lapped the Italian circuit in a fastest time of 1m30.547s at the start of Sunday's final three-hour session in the #8 TS050 HYBRID.

The team brought two updated TS050 HYBRIDs to Monza for the public launch of the car on Friday followed by two days of testing in the presence of all other WEC competitors.

It therefore represented the first opportunity to compare performance with LMP1 rivals Porsche, although outright fastest lap times were not the top priority on a weekend of testing various set-ups and settings.

This weekend also marked the first public appearance of Super Formula champion Yuji Kunimoto as a TOYOTA driver in WEC, while Nicolas made his return to the team he last drove for in 2014. Both showed that they are integrating quickly, with Yuji also making continuous progress behind the wheel on his first-ever visit to Monza.

Mike Conway and Kamui Kobayashi, in the #7, were on hand to fine-tune settings of the low-downforce TS050 HYBRID which will make its race debut in the second round of the season, at Spa-Francorchamps.

Anthony Davidson and Kazuki Nakajima represented the #8 crew, with #9 drivers Nicolas and Yuji gaining valuable running time before their race debuts at Spa. Sebastien Buemi, Jose Maria Lopez and Stéphane Sarrazin appeared at the car launch on Friday but departed early to compete in the Mexican round of Formula E.

Toshio Sato, Toyota Team President: "It has been nice to visit a new circuit and this gave us an opportunity to test our low-downforce car at a very high-speed track. This is good preparation for Le Mans so it was important that the cars ran reliably, to help us get as much data as possible. Thanks to the fans who came to watch the Prologue; they provided a nice atmosphere and really helped create excitement for the start of the season. Now we are looking forward to fighting with Porsche from the first round of the season. We have seen encouraging signs here in Monza with our low-downforce car, now we will be working flat-out to prepare our high-downforce package for Silverstone."

LMP2 was topped by the #38 JOTA Sport run-DC Racing ORECA of Ho-Pin Tung, who set a 1m36.448s – four tenths shy of Matthieu Vaxiviere's best effort in the #28 TDS car from earlier in the day.

Ford topped GTE Pro category during the test, with the pair of Ganassi-run GTs 1-2.

Combined Times 5-Sessions

LMP1
1 8 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 – Hybrid LMP1 H Nicolas LAPIERRE 1:30.547 101 230.3 Afternoon Session Day 2
2 8 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 – Hybrid LMP1 H Anthony DAVIDSON 1:30.809 118 0.262 229.7 Afternoon Session Day 2
3 7 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 – Hybrid LMP1 H Mike CONWAY 1:31.332 94 0.785 228.3 Afternoon Session Day 1
4 7 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 – Hybrid LMP1 H Kamui KOBAYASHI 1:31.477 85 0.930 228.0 Afternoon Session Day 2
5 1 Porsche LMP Team Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 H Neel JANI 1:31.666 99 1.119 227.5 Night Session Day 1
6 2 Porsche LMP Team Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 H Earl BAMBER 1:31.823 108 1.276 227.1 Night Session Day 1
7 1 Porsche LMP Team Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 H Nick TANDY 1:31.844 108 1.297 227.1 Afternoon Session Day 2
8 8 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 – Hybrid LMP1 H Kazuki NAKAJIMA 1:31.970 107 1.423 226.8 Night Session Day 1
9 2 Porsche LMP Team Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 H Brendon HARTLEY 1:32.024 91 1.477 226.6 Morning Session Day 2
10 2 Porsche LMP Team Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 H Timo BERNHARD 1:32.066 128 1.519 226.5 Afternoon Session Day 2
11 1 Porsche LMP Team Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 H André LOTTERER 1:32.211 120 1.664 226.2 Afternoon Session Day 1
12 7 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 – Hybrid LMP1 H Yuji KUNIMOTO 1:32.750 137 2.203 224.8 Afternoon Session Day 2
13 4 Bykolles Racing Team ENSO CLM P1/01 – Nismo LMP1 Oliver WEBB 2:17.915 6 47.368 151.2 Night Session Day 1
4 Bykolles Racing Team ENSO CLM P1/01 – Nismo LMP1 Robert KUBICA
LMP2
1 28 TDS Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Matthieu VAXIVIÈRE 1:36.078 49 217.1 Morning Session Day 2
2 31 Vaillante Rebellion Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Bruno SENNA 1:36.094 78 0.016 217.0 Morning Session Day 1
3 38 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Ho-Pin TUNG 1:36.448 53 0.370 216.2 Afternoon Session Day 2
4 26 G-Drive Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Roman RUSINOV 1:36.456 97 0.378 216.2 Morning Session Day 2
5 35 Signatech Alpine Matmut Alpine A470 – Gibson LMP2 Nelson PANCIATICI 1:36.559 74 0.481 216.0 Afternoon Session Day 2
6 24 CEFC Manor TRS Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Vitaly PETROV 1:36.590 44 0.512 215.9 Afternoon Session Day 2
7 13 Vaillante Rebellion Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Mathias BECHE 1:36.689 111 0.611 215.7 Morning Session Day 2
8 37 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Alex BRUNDLE 1:36.695 43 0.617 215.7 Morning Session Day 2
9 35 Signatech Alpine Matmut Alpine A470 – Gibson LMP2 André NEGRÃO 1:36.797 88 0.719 215.4 Morning Session Day 2
10 36 Signatech Alpine Matmut Alpine A470 – Gibson LMP2 Romain DUMAS 1:36.814 56 0.736 215.4 Morning Session Day 2
11 36 Signatech Alpine Matmut Alpine A470 – Gibson LMP2 Gustavo MENEZES 1:36.842 100 0.764 215.3 Afternoon Session Day 2
12 38 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Thomas LAURENT 1:36.867 56 0.789 215.3 Afternoon Session Day 2
13 31 Vaillante Rebellion Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Julien CANAL 1:36.883 76 0.805 215.3 Morning Session Day 2
14 26 G-Drive Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Pierre THIRIET 1:36.930 59 0.852 215.2 Morning Session Day 1
15 38 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Oliver JARVIS 1:37.162 70 1.084 214.6 Afternoon Session Day 2
16 37 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Tristan GOMMENDY 1:37.475 36 1.397 214.0 Morning Session Day 1
17 26 G-Drive Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 John MARTIN 1:37.498 54 1.420 213.9 Afternoon Session Day 1
18 24 CEFC Manor TRS Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Jonathan HIRSCHI 1:37.548 41 1.470 213.8 Afternoon Session Day 2
19 13 Vaillante Rebellion Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 David HEINEMEIER HANSSON 1:37.657 62 1.579 213.6 Morning Session Day 2
20 28 TDS Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Emmanuel COLLARD 1:38.114 56 2.036 212.6 Morning Session Day 1
21 24 CEFC Manor TRS Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Roberto GONZALEZ 1:38.551 33 2.473 211.6 Afternoon Session Day 2
22 35 Signatech Alpine Matmut Alpine A470 – Gibson LMP2 Pierre RAGUES 1:38.876 80 2.798 210.9 Afternoon Session Day 1
23 24 CEFC Manor TRS Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Tor GRAVES 1:39.039 37 2.961 210.6 Afternoon Session Day 2
24 24 CEFC Manor TRS Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 Simon TRUMMER 1:39.068 41 2.990 210.5 Morning Session Day 1
25 36 Signatech Alpine Matmut Alpine A470 – Gibson LMP2 Matthew RAO 1:39.141 63 3.063 210.4 Afternoon Session Day 2
26 37 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca 07 – Gibson LMP2 David CHENG 1:39.440 42 3.362 209.7 Morning Session Day 1
27 28 TDS Racing Oreca 07 РGibson LMP2 Fran̤ois PERRODO 1:39.970 98 3.892 208.6 Afternoon Session Day 2
LMGTE Pro
1 92 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE Pro Michael CHRISTENSEN 1:47.379 132 194.2 Morning Session Day 1
2 92 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE Pro Kévin ESTRE 1:47.507 89 0.128 194.0 Morning Session Day 2
3 91 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE Pro Frédéric MAKOWIECKI 1:47.515 105 0.136 194.0 Morning Session Day 2
4 67 Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK Ford GT LMGTE Pro Harry TINCKNELL 1:47.530 155 0.151 193.9 Afternoon Session Day 2
5 67 Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK Ford GT LMGTE Pro Andy PRIAULX 1:47.539 42 0.160 193.9 Morning Session Day 1
6 66 Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK Ford GT LMGTE Pro Olivier PLA 1:47.572 120 0.193 193.9 Afternoon Session Day 2
7 66 Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK Ford GT LMGTE Pro Stefan MÃœCKE 1:47.781 74 0.402 193.5 Morning Session Day 1
8 91 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR LMGTE Pro Richard LIETZ 1:48.040 118 0.661 193.0 Afternoon Session Day 1
9 51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Pro James CALADO 1:48.192 42 0.813 192.8 Afternoon Session Day 2
10 71 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Pro Davide RIGON 1:48.232 94 0.853 192.7 Morning Session Day 2
11 51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Pro Alessandro PIER GUIDI 1:48.578 74 1.199 192.1 Morning Session Day 2
12 95 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin VANTAGE LMGTE Pro Richie STANAWAY 1:48.624 141 1.245 192.0 Afternoon Session Day 1
13 97 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin VANTAGE LMGTE Pro Darren TURNER 1:48.706 124 1.327 191.8 Afternoon Session Day 2
14 71 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Pro Miguel MOLINA 1:48.724 16 1.345 191.8 Afternoon Session Day 2
15 95 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin VANTAGE LMGTE Pro Marco SØRENSEN 1:48.807 30 1.428 191.7 Afternoon Session Day 1
16 97 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin VANTAGE LMGTE Pro Jonathan ADAM 1:49.177 75 1.798 191.0 Morning Session Day 2
17 95 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin VANTAGE LMGTE Pro Nicki THIIM 1:49.320 19 1.941 190.8 Morning Session Day 2
LMGTE Am
1 54 Spirit of Race Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Am Miguel MOLINA 1:49.843 43 189.9 Morning Session Day 2
2 86 Gulf Racing UK Porsche 911 RSR (991) LMGTE Am Benjamin BARKER 1:50.010 82 0.167 189.6 Morning Session Day 2
3 77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR (991) LMGTE Am Matteo CAIROLI 1:50.180 46 0.337 189.3 Afternoon Session Day 1
4 98 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin V8 Vantage LMGTE Am Pedro LAMY 1:50.193 21 0.350 189.3 Morning Session Day 2
5 98 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin V8 Vantage LMGTE Am Mathias LAUDA 1:50.257 21 0.414 189.1 Morning Session Day 2
6 61 Clearwater Racing Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Am Keita SAWA 1:50.271 50 0.428 189.1 Afternoon Session Day 2
7 54 Spirit of Race Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Am Francesco CASTELLACCI 1:50.455 72 0.612 188.8 Afternoon Session Day 1
8 61 Clearwater Racing Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Am Matt GRIFFIN 1:50.517 51 0.674 188.7 Afternoon Session Day 1
9 98 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin V8 Vantage LMGTE Am Paul DALLA LANA 1:50.671 95 0.828 188.4 Afternoon Session Day 2
10 86 Gulf Racing UK Porsche 911 RSR (991) LMGTE Am Nick FOSTER 1:50.826 70 0.983 188.2 Afternoon Session Day 2
11 61 Clearwater Racing Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Am Weng Sun MOK 1:51.369 117 1.526 187.3 Morning Session Day 2
12 77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR (991) LMGTE Am Christian RIED 1:51.523 24 1.680 187.0 Morning Session Day 1
13 77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR (991) LMGTE Am Marvin DIENST 1:51.627 56 1.784 186.8 Morning Session Day 1
14 54 Spirit of Race Ferrari 488 GTE LMGTE Am Thomas FLOHR 1:51.992 56 2.149 186.2 Afternoon Session Day 2
15 86 Gulf Racing UK Porsche 911 RSR (991) LMGTE Am Michael WAINWRIGHT 1:52.102 92 2.259 186.0 Afternoon Session Day 2

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