Weekend Recap: WEC Hypercar Era Kicks Off at Spa; SRO America in COTA & More
Catch up on a busy weekend of sports car racing from around the globe...
Toyota Gazoo Racing’s Sebastien Buemi, Brendon Hartley and Kazuki Nakajima claimed the first win of the FIA World Endurance Championship’s Hypercar era at Spa.
Buemi steered the No. 8 Toyota GR010 Hybrid past the checkered flag a minute and 7 seconds clear of Andre Negrao in the second-placed Alpine A480 Gibson non-hybrid LMP1 car that was also driven by Nicolas Lapierre and Matthieu Vaxiviere.
After a troubled race involving several issues and a trip into the Bruxelles gravel, Toyota’s pole-sitting No. 7 Le Mans Hypercar of Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez finished the six-hour race one lap off the winning entry in third position.
All three of the Hypercar entries took turns at the head of the overall field at Spa, which marked the debut of the LMH formula that has been introduced to replace LMP1.
United Autosports dominated the LMP2 ranks while Porsche GT Team and AF Corse took GTE-Pro and GTE-Am class honors, respectively.
K-PAX Lamborghinis Sweep GTWC America Races at COTA
A last-lap pass by Giovanni Venturini on teammate Jordan Pepper has given the No. 6 K-PAX Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo its first victory of the Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS season in Sunday’s round at Circuit of The Americas.
The Italian and co-driver Corey Lewis celebrated a surprise win after a strange final lap in the 90-minute race, which appeared to have been heading Pepper’s way after his charge through the field in the No. 3 Lamborghini.
However, Venturini got around the South African for the lead on the final lap and crossed the line 0.360 seconds in another K-PAX 1-2 finish.
Pepper and co-driver Andrea Caldarelli claimed victory in Race 1 of the weekend on Saturday, which ended early due to heavy rains.
Nolasport Dominant in Pirelli GT4 America at COTA
Matt Travis and Jason Hart have continued their winning ways, with the pair claiming their fourth consecutive Pirelli GT4 America overall victory in Sunday’s round at Circuit of The Americas.
Travis held off a hard-charging Kenny Murillo for victory in the 60-minute race following a late-race pass on the No. 119 Stephen Cameron Racing BMW M4 GT4 of Sean Quinlan.
Quinlan, who emerged as the leader following the round of mid-race pit stops and driver changes, enjoyed a hard-fought battle with Travis for the lead.
Travis got around the BMW with only eight minutes to go.
Sofronas, Iribe Claim GT America Wins
Brendan Iribe drove to a dominant victory in the second GT America powered by AWS race of the weekend at Circuit of The Americas for inception racing.
James Sofronas, meanwhile, claimed top honors in Saturday’s opening race in his GMG Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo.
The Optimum Motorsport-run McLaren 720S GT3 claimed its first overall win in the team’s North American debut, with Iribe finishing 1.767 seconds ahead of Sofronas in Sunday’s race.
Having started on pole, Iribe jumped out into an early lead and stretched the advantage following the race’s only full-course caution and restart with 25 minutes to go.