#2, Porsche LMP Team, Porsche 919 Hybrid, driven by, Timo Bernhard, Earl Bamber, Brendon Hartley, Marc Lieb, 24 Heures Du Mans Test weekend, 03/06/2017,
Held on the weekend of 3-4 June 2017, the test day for this year’s Le Mans was run under clear skies. It was an excellent opportunity for the teams to put their cars, drivers, personnel and systems through their paces ahead of the big day on 17-18 June. Below is a summary of how the 2017 Le Mans test day went for the Porsche teams.
Porsche 919 Hybrid – LMP1
Track action took place on the Sunday where the two Porsche 919 Hybrids covered a combined total of 156 laps. In the #1 Porsche, Neel Jani/André Lotterer/Nick Tandy were behind the wheel, while in the #2 Porsche, Earl Bamber/Timo Bernhard/Brendon Hartley were getting their eye in. Marc Lieb, the 2016 Le Mans winner, also drove on Sunday as the ACO have made it mandatory for reserve drivers to participate at the test day as well.
The best lap time of a Porsche 919 Hybrid last Sunday was 3:21.512 minutes, seven-tenths of a second better than the 919’s best test lap time in 2016. This was achieved despite restrictions enforced by new regulations concerning the aerodynamics in particular. The Porsche LMP team did not simulate qualifying at the test, choosing instead to go through their test routine. They finished fourth and fifth quickest behind Toyota after eight hours of testing. It should be remembered that none of the teams testing last Sunday would wish to reveal their strengths, and so all times can be safely assumed to be very conservative.
Andreas Seidl, Team Principal: “We’ve had a mixed test day. We were focussing on race set-up and refrained from simulating qualifying. Although we didn’t achieve the mileage we wanted, we still learnt important lessons for the race regarding tyre choice and tyre wear. In the coming days, we will analyse today’s data and draw our conclusions to improve our cars’ performance. We unfortunately lost a lot of test time with our #2 car. Due to an oil leak, we had to change the combustion engine over lunch. At 3:38pm, after only two-and-a-half hours repair time, the car was back on track. What caused the leak is still to be analysed but the team did a great job.”
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