6 Hours of Shanghai
Dunlop-shod Signatech Alpine became 2016 FIA World Endurance (WEC) LMP2 champions at 6 Hours of Shanghai, the penultimate round of the championship, having finished fourth. The race was won by G-Drive Racing, also on Dunlop rubber, in its second consecutive victory. Additionally the ByKolles CLM claimed its first win of 2016 in the LMP1 Privateer class.
In Shanghai G-Drive Racing’s team of Will Stevens, Alex Brundle and Roman Rusinov led 144 of the 180 laps in their Oreca followed by the #30 Extreme Speed Motorsports’ Ligier. The biggest LMP2 battle was for third place between the two title contenders. RGR Sport held their slim margin for the last hour of the race, crossing the line in the Ligier just 0.509 seconds before Signatech Alpine. Signatech’s line-up of Nicolas Lapierre, Gustavo Menezes and Stéphane Richelmi claimed the WEC title with its consistent performance, having won four races, including the Le Mans 24 Hours, and finishing all of the seven races to date no lower than fourth. The team previously won the European Le Mans Series on Dunlop tyres in 2014.
LMP1 Privateer, CLM of ByKolles Racing drove a solid race, capitalising on Rebellion Racing’s issue that necessitated a visit to the pits for over eight minutes. The ByKolles trio of Oliver Webb, Simon Trummer and Pierre Kaffer opted for the medium tyre compound for the ultra low-grip track.
Nicki Thiim and Marco Sørensen finished fourth in the #95 Aston Martin Racing Vantage to extend their lead in the World Endurance Cup for GT Drivers by a further two points. The sister #97 car failed to score after being involved in an incident at the start of the race.
Mike McGregor, Dunlop manager testing & track support: “Huge congratulations to Signatech Alpine – it’s their second major championship with us and they have driven the perfect endurance season. Scoring points consistently is key and they’ve done just that. Congratulations to G-Drive for another win too. The LMP2 cars ran on both medium and medium-plus compounds which worked well on the very low-grip surface here at Shanghai. Alex Lynn set another fastest lap in the #44 Manor Racing Oreca and it was good to see ESM back on the podium. Aston Martin Racing were happy with their tyre choice having opted for the medium compound. It was a great shame that the #97 car was in the wrong place at the wrong time so couldn’t increase their points too.”