The #7 Toyota took its second win of the 2018/18 FIA World Endurance Championship in 6 Hours of Shanghai from sister #8 as #11 SMP Racing BR Engineering completed the podium.
Rain played a major role in the early part of the six hours race as there were two big red flag periods along with racing behind the safety car but the two Toyota cars seemed unfazed as they led the way fighting among themselves pretty much.
The #8 Toyota crew of Fernando Alonso, Kazuki Nakajima and Sebastien Buemi led the way initially but the #7 crew of Kamui Kobayashi, Jose Maria Lopez and Mike Conway took it back through a strategic move.
The lead for the #7 grew even further when the #8 car was held up due to a red light in the pits. It managed to reel in the sister car but with a late safety car period, the positions stayed the same as #7 took the win ahead of #8 by 1.419s after 113 laps of racing.
The #11 SMP Racing crew of Jenson Button, Vitaly Petrov and Mikhail Aleshin had some delight their way finally in the season with their first podium finish of 2018 after a clean outing for the Russian team.
It finished a lap down though and had #1 Rebellion Racing Gibson crew of Andre Lotterer, Neel Jani and Bruno Senna on its tail but the wet track in the end stages meant the team couldn’t pounce on the safety car period when they closed up well.
The #3 Rebellion of Thomas Laurent, Gustavo Menezes and Mathias Beche were fifth despite a crash early on in the race under the safety car. They finished three laps down like #10 DragonSpeed BR Engineering of Ben Hanley, James Allen and Renger van der Zande.
The remaining two LMP1 cars of #17 SMP Racing BR Engineering and #4 ByKolles Nismo retired from the race. The LMP2 class saw the #38 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca of Ho-Pin Tung, Gabriel Aubry, Stephane Richelmi took the class win despite two spins.
It finished on top of the #36 DragonSpeed Oreca (1m49.857s) of Pastor Maldonado, Anthony Davidson and Roberto Gonzalez with the #28 TDS Racing Oreca (1m51.006s) of Loic Duval, Matthieu Vaxiviere and Francois Perrodo completing the podium.
The #37 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca’s Jazeman Jaafar, Nabil Jeffri and Weiron Tan off in Turn 2 hindered their podium chances as it was fourth with the #39 Racing Team Nederland Dallara and #50 Larbre Competition Ligier rounding the class.
It was a solid outing for the LMGTE-Pro class cars as it mixed up with the LMP2 category cars – in fact, the class winners #95 Aston Martin Racing of Nicki Thiim and Marco Sorensen finished ahead of the LMP2 winner.
Second place went to #91 Porsche GT Team of Richard Lietz and Gianmaria Bruni with the sister #92 car of Michael Christensen and Kevin Estre behind them after both managed to clear the #97 Aston Martin Racing in the race.
The #77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche of Matt Campbell, Julien Andlauer and Christian Ried won LMGTE-Am class from the #56 Project 1 Porsche of Jorg Bergmeister, Egidio Perfetti and Patrick Lindsey.