Straight from his maiden win since joining the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) at the last round in Fuji, Japan two weeks ago, Andy Priaulx and his team mate Harry Tincknell brought the number 67 Ford GT home in first place again today in Shanghai.
After a hard push in practice, learning the circuit (neither having been there before) and adjusting the set-up to suit the low grip track, the pair were placed in pole position after qualifying.
“If you had asked me yesterday if this was our track I would have said no way, it shows how hard the team has worked to change things around,” said Priaulx after qualifying.
The race was nearly over before the end of the first lap with the 45 car of Mathias Beche spinning right in front of both the Chip Ganassi team cars, narrowly missing them and unfortunately taking out the 97 Aston Martin.
From there on the pair settled into a rhythm and led to the chequered flag, alternating drivers at each pit stop. In the process of securing maximum points for the win and an extra point for pole position, Andy bossed the lap record (terminology used by the commentators) by 1.488 seconds, which now stands at 2m 02.217s. It was a fantastic effort by all the team to provide the car to obtain such a feat.
“the weekend just kept getting better”
Andy was in jubilant mood after the press conference: “It was very special to be on pole yesterday, everyone worked so hard and we grew in confidence throughout the weekend, so I can’t be happier,” Continuing, he added: “I got a great start and put in some mega opening laps to create a gap, but never a cushion to the sister car. We got the rhythm right, the pit stops were faultless and the team came up with the goods every time we changed over. Harry did a superb job and we have worked really well together all weekend – it’s been a pleasure to get this result.”
Moving on to the final race in Bahrain: “It all starts again. We’ve never been there, it could be good for us, but until we turn a wheel we just won’t know. However, one thing I do know is that I can’t wait to get there and do this all again.”
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2016 FIA WORLD ENDURANCE CHAMPIONSHIP CALENDAR
17th April – 6 Hours of Silverstone – GBR
7th May – WEC 6 Hours of Spa Francorchamps – BEL
18th/19th June – Le Mans 24 Hours – FRA
24th July – 6 Hours of Nürburgring –DEU
3rd September – 6 Hours of Mexico City – MEX
17th September – 6 Hours of Circuit of the Americas – USA
16th October – 6 Hours of Fuji – JAP
6th November – 6 Hours of Shanghai – CHN
19th November – 6 Hours of Bahrain – BHR