FIA WEC

Monza glory for Toyota/Michelin

The 6 Hours of Monza – Round 3 of the 2012 FIA World Endurance Championship – was won by the MICHELIN Pilot Sport-equipped N°7 Toyota GR010 Hybrid of Conway/Kobayashi/Lopez. The Italian fixture was the last race before this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours on August 21-22.

FIA WEC

From virtual to reality

Michelin Motorsport, Clermont-Ferrand, France – February, 2020: On completion of the design phase, a digital version of the MICHELIN Pilot Sport for endurance racing’s new Hypercar class was produced for the purpose of simulator testing, ahead of the real thing’s manufacture and eventual sign-off a few months later.

FIA WEC

Toyota/Michelin scores a 1-2 finish in Portimao

Following on from its victory at the 2021 FIA World Endurance Championship’s opener at Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, Toyota Gazoo Racing succeeded in monopolizing the top two places at the end of the 8 Hours of Portimao with its brace of MICHELIN Pilot Sport-equipped GR010 Hybrids. The Japanese Hypercars were joined on the Portuguese podium by the sole Alpine A480/Michelin. Ferrari/Michelin topped the order in both LM GTE classes.

The Autodromo do Algarve, which was hosting FIA WEC action for the very first time, is a twisty, flowing, recently-resurfaced circuit that proved particularly punishing for tires as the track temperature soared to more than 40°C in the early-summer heat.

“The long, last, downhill turn was particularly hard on the left-hand tires,” says Pierre Alves, the manager of Michelin Motorsport’s endurance racing programs. “Over a distance of around 150 meters, and for approximately two-and-a-half seconds, the two left-hand tires had to soak up a load of 1,200kg while running at a temperature of 150°C. In the Toyotas’ case, they had to cope with this punishment 37 times per stint. Even so, thanks to the Performance Made to Last qualities of our latest products, our partners in the Hypercar class were able to run double-stint strategies.”

The eight-hour race (a third of the distance of the Le Mans 24 Hours which had initially been scheduled to take place the same weekend before its postponement until late-August) produced a one-two finish for Toyota Gazoo Racing, led by the team’s N°8 prototype of Buemi/Nakajima/Hartley after a fierce fight with its N°7 sister car (Conway/Kobayashi/Lopez) and the Alpine A480 which was also competing on Michelin’s new Hypercar tires. The gap between Toyota’s GR010 Hybrids at the finish was just 1.8 seconds after 300 laps/1,370km!

After claiming the French make’s first pole-position in world-class endurance racing since Le Mans 1977, the Alpine seemed to have the edge in terms of race speed. Indeed, helped by the consistency of his MICHELIN Pilot Sports, French driver Nicolas Lapierre posted the afternoon’s fastest race lap on Lap 212 on tires that that had already completed 27 laps. The Alpine A480 was forced to make two additional refueling stops compared to the Toyotas, however, and had to settle for third spot at the checkered flag, 1m8.597s adrift of the winning prototype.

51

The LMGTE Pro class saw Ferrari and Michelin claim their 26th FIA WEC victory together, aided by a flawless tire strategy. After AF Corse quickly switched to ‘Hot Weather Medium’ slicks, the N°51 Ferrari of Pier Guidi/Calado was able to edge clear of the pole-winning N°92 Porsche and ultimately win the race ahead of the similar N°52 Ferrari (Serra/Molina). In contrast, the winning tire gameplan in LMGTE Am was the Medium compound from start to finish, a choice that allowed Cetilar Racing’s N°47 Ferrari (Lacorte/Sernagiotto/Fuoco) to take the spoils, ahead of the N°56 Porsche and N°54 Ferrari.

The next round of the 2021 FIA World Endurance Championship will take teams to Italy for the 6 Hours of Monza on July 18. It will be the final chance for teams to prepare for this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours (August 21-22) which is expected to attract a crowd of 50,000 spectators.

8 Hours of Portimao – Final Positions:

  1. Buemi/Nakajima/Hartley (Toyota GR010 Hybrid/Michelin), 300 laps
  2. Conway/Kobayashi/Lopez (Toyota GR010 Hybrid/Michelin), +1.800s
  3. Negrao/Lapierre/Vaxivière (Alpine A480/Michelin), +1m8.597s
  4. Gonzalez/Da Costa/Davidson (Oreca-Gibson), +4 laps
  5. Geleal/Vandoorne/Blomqvist (Oreca-Gibson), +4 laps

Etc.

MOTOGP™

MotoGP™: Márquez takes assertive Austin win

Marc Márquez (Repsol Honda Team) was in unbeatable form at the Red Bull Grand Prix of The Americas – Round 15 of the 2021 MotoGPTM World Championship – at the notoriously bumpy Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas. The Spaniard was followed over the line by Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) and Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) who made it three different bikemakers on the podium in another display of the MICHELIN Power tire range’s exceptional versatility.  

MOTOGP™

MotoGP™: Bagnaia wins on home soil as Michelin helps more records tumble

Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) scored his second victory in as many weekends by winning the Gran Premio Octo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, Round 14 of the 2021 MotoGPTM World Championship. The Italian was joined on the podium by Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) and rookie Enea Bastianini (Avintia Esponsorama), while the MICHELIN Power Slick range contributed to new track-lap, race-lap and shortest race-duration records for Misano. 

MOTOGP™

MotoGP™: Maiden MotoGPTM win for Bagnaia and Michelin’s 460th!

The Gran Premio TISSOT de Aragón (Round 13 of the 2021 MotoGPTM World Championship) saw Lenovo Ducati Team’s Francesco Bagnaia collect the first win of his career at this level. Second and third at Aragon were Marc Márquez (Repsol Honda Team) and defending champ Joan Mir (Team SUZUKI ECSTAR), while four different Michelin-equipped bikemakers filled the top four places as more records tumbled at the exacting Spanish circuit. 

MOTOGP™

MotoGP™: Quartararo uncatchable at Silverstone

Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) dominated Round 12 of the 2021 MotoGPTM World Championship at Silverstone, Great Britain, to notch up his fifth victory of the campaign. He led comfortably for most of the Monster Energy British Grand Prix to beat Alex Rins (Team SUZUKI ECSTAR), while Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) harvested Aprilia’s maiden MotoGPTM podium finish. The top six places featured six different bikemakers – a first in MotoGPTM history and further evidence of the MICHELIN Power range’s outstanding versatility.  

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