WEC: Toyota front-row lock-out in Bahrain while Porsche on pole in LMGTE Pro

TOYOTA GAZOO Racing earned Hypercar pole position and a clean sweep of the front row for the 6 Hours of Bahrain as it moved a step closer to the 2021 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) title.

Brendon Hartley stayed cool in the Bahrain heat to set a fastest lap of 1min 47.049secs and give the #8 GR010 HYBRID, which he shares with Sébastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima, its first Hypercar pole.

Pole winning #8 Toyota

The two GR010 HYBRID Hypercars had been closely matched throughout practice and Kamui Kobayashi completed a perfect team result, taking second in the #7 GR010 HYBRID he drives alongside fellow reigning World Champions Mike Conway and José María López. His lap was 0.398secs off pole.

Pole position for the #8 car was achieved the hard way via a challenging start to the day, when an accident in second practice required suspension repairs and new front bodywork. The mechanics performed impressively to repair the car in time for third practice when the crucial qualifying preparations took place.

Qualifying delivered one potentially-important point in the battle for both Hypercar World Championships. By banking that point today, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing can now guarantee the teams’ championship with fourth place in Saturday’s race.

It is a particularly significant point in the battle for the drivers’ crown. Sébastien, Kazuki and Brendon have now narrowed the gap to leaders Mike, Kamui and José to eight points, with 64 still to fight for in the Bahrain double-header.

The Rest

The No. 92 Porsche heads LMGTE Pro for the fourth time this season, while the No. 28 JOTA took top position in LMP2 for the team’s second pole of 2021.

Iron Lynx was fastest in LMGTE Am ahead of No. 98 Aston Martin Racing entry.

Below are the main headlines from qualifying.


  • No.8 Toyota Gazoo Racing takes Hypercar and overall pole in Bahrain as Brendon Hartley sets the pace
  • Hartley guides Toyota GR010 HYBRID Hypercar to best lap of 1m47.049s
  • Kiwi driver beats No.7 sister Toyota to reduce points deficit to eight points ahead of tomorrow’s race
  • No.7 Toyota second as Kamui Kobayashi sets best lap of 1m47.447s
  • Alpine Elf Matmut Hypercar driven by Andre Negrao to start third after Brazilian laps in 1m48.003s
  • Negrao gets fastest lap deleted in final moments after infringing track limits


  • No.92 Porsche GT Team takes LMGTE Pro pole as Kevin Estre sets best lap of 1m56.144s
  • Frenchman celebrates four poles from five rounds so far this season and reduces gap in title chase to 11-points
  • Porsche claims 1-2 lock-out as Gimmi Bruni takes No.91 Porsche 911 RSR to a best of 1m56.178s, just 0.034s off pole time
  • Porsche enjoys sizeable 1.18 second advantage over class rival, Ferrari
  • AF Corse Ferraris to start third and fourth as No.51 Ferrari 488 GTE Evo heads No.52 AF Corse run entry
  • Alessandro Pier Guidi and Miguel Molina set laps and ae separated by just 0.3s


  • Tom Blomqvist claims the pole in LMP2 class for JOTA for second time in 2021
  • He laps in very rapid 1m49.932s to go marginally quicker than United Autosports USA car
  • Filipe Albuquerque’s late time grabs second as team aims to defend LMP2 title
  • JOTA also take third best time as No.38 Oreca-Gibson driven by Antonio Felix da Costa places third to make it three title contenders in first three positions on the grid
  • Loic Duval peaks on a 1m50.559s to take fourth and also leads Pro/Am division for Realteam Racing


  • Rino Mastronardi seals first Iron Lynx pole position in FIA WEC in No.60 Ferrari 488 GTE Evo
  • Recent ELMS title winner laps in 1m59.687s to out-pace No.98 Aston Martin Racing car driven by Paul Dalla Lana by 0.7s
  • Third on LMGTE Am grid is No.56 Project 1 Porsche as Egidio Perfetti gets to within 0.073s of the Aston

Qualifying Results

Pos No. Drivers Team Class Time Behind Gap
1 8 S. Buemi/K. Nakajima/B. Hartley Toyota Gazoo Racing HYPERCAR 1:47.049 0.000s 0.000s
2 7 M. Conway/K. Kobayashi/J. Lopez Toyota Gazoo Racing HYPERCAR 1:47.447 0.398 0.398
3 36 A. Negrão/N. Lapierre/M. Vaxiviere Alpine Elf Matmut HYPERCAR 1:48.003 0.954 0.556
4 28 S. Gelael/S. Vandoorne/T. Blomqvist JOTA LMP2 1:49.932 2.883 1.929
5 22 P. Hanson/F. Scherer/F. Albuquerque United Autosports USA LMP2 1:49.994 2.945 0.062
6 38 R. Gonzalez/A. Da Costa/A. Davidson JOTA LMP2 1:50.198 3.149 0.204
7 70 E. Garcia/L. Duval/N. Nato Realteam Racing LMP2 1:50.559 3.510 0.361
8 34 J. Smiechowski/R. Van Der Zande/A. Brundle Inter Europol Competition LMP2 1:50.658 3.609 0.099
9 29 F. Van Eerd/G. Van Der Garde/J. Van Uitert Racing Team Nederland LMP2 1:50.942 3.893 0.284
10 31 R. Frijns/F. Habsburg/C. Milesi Team WRT LMP2 1:51.043 3.994 0.101
11 21 H. Hedman/J. Montoya/B. Hanley DragonSpeed USA LMP2 1:51.312 4.263 0.269
12 44 M. Konopka/O. Webb/K. Maini ARC Bratislava LMP2 1:51.487 4.438 0.175
13 20 D. Andersen/A. Fjordbach/R. Kubica High Class Racing LMP2 1:51.506 4.457 0.019
14 1 S. Floersch/B. Visser/G. Aubry Richard Mille Racing Team LMP2 1:51.736 4.687 0.230
15 92 K. Estre/N. Jani Porsche GT Team LMGTE Pro 1:56.144 9.095 4.408
16 91 G. Bruni/R. Lietz Porsche GT Team LMGTE Pro 1:56.178 9.129 0.034
17 52 D. Serra/M. Molina AF Corse LMGTE Pro 1:57.327 10.278 1.149
18 51 A. Pier Guidi/J. Calado AF Corse LMGTE Pro 1:57.573 10.524 0.246
19 60 R. Mastronardi/A. Piccini/M. Cressoni Iron Lynx LMGTE Am 1:58.687 11.638 1.114
20 98 P. Dalla Lana/A. Farfus/M. Gomes Aston Martin Racing LMGTE Am 1:59.331 12.282 0.644
21 56 E. Perfetti/M. Cairoli/R. Pera Team Project 1 LMGTE Am 1:59.404 12.355 0.073
22 47 R. Lacorte/G. Sernagiotto/A. Fuoco Cetilar Racing LMGTE Am 1:59.410 12.361 0.006
23 54 T. Flohr/F. Castellacci/G. Fisichella AF Corse LMGTE Am 1:59.534 12.485 0.124
24 33 B. Keating/D. Pereira/F. Fraga TF Sport LMGTE Am 1:59.538 12.489 0.004
25 88 K. Al Qubaisi/A. De Leener/J. Andlauer Dempsey – Proton Racing LMGTE Am 1:59.923 12.874 0.385
26 83 F. Perrodo/N. Nielsen/A. Rovera AF Corse LMGTE Am 2:00.263 13.214 0.340
27 77 C. Ried/J. Evans/M. Campbell Dempsey – Proton Racing LMGTE Am 2:00.294 13.245 0.031
28 777 S. Hoshino/T. Fujii/A. Watson D’Station Racing LMGTE Am 2:00.300 13.251 0.006
29 85 R. Frey/S. Bovy/K. Legge Iron Lynx LMGTE Am 2:00.457 13.408 0.157
30 86 M. Wainwright/B. Barker/T. Gamble GR Racing LMGTE Am 2:00.939 13.890 0.482
31 57 T. Kimura/M. Jensen/S. Andrews Kessel Racing LMGTE Am 2:01.877 14.828 0.938