The FIA World Endurance Championship heads to Bahrain for the final race of the 2017 season, with three world championships decided in China but with several titles, including the inaugural GT FIA World Endurance Driver’s Championship, still up for grabs.
In China Toyota took their fourth win of the season and the second in a row but it wasn’t enough to stop Porsche claiming the 2017 LMP1 FIA World Endurance Manufacturer’s Championship. The two 919 hybrids finished 2nd and 3rd to give the German manufacturer a 53.5 point advantage with a maximum of 44 points available at the end of the 6 Hours of Bahrain.
1 Porsche 303 2017 CHAMPIONS
2 Toyota 249.5
Brendon Hartley, Earl Bamber and Timo Bernhard fought back after a disappointing race in Japan to take second place in China and secure the LMP FIA World Endurance Driver’s Championship.
Sebastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Anthony Davidson) took their fourth victory of 2017, making them the crew with the largest number of wins during the 2017 season so far. However three time winners Hartley, Bamber and Bernhard took 18 points for second place in China giving them an unassailable 32 point advantage with only 26 points available in Bahrain.
Brendon Hartley and Timo Bernhard have added the 2017 world title to the one they secured in 2015 with Mark Webber, and a first world crown for double 24 Hours of Le Mans Champion (2015 /2017) Earl Bamber.
1 Brendon HARTLEY Porsche Team 190 2017 CHAMPION
1 Earl BAMBER Porsche Team 190 2017 CHAMPION
1 Timo BERNHARD Porsche Team 190 2017 CHAMPION
2 Kazuki NAKAJIMA Toyota Gazoo Racing 158 2017 Vice Champion
2 Sébastien BUEMI Toyota Gazoo Racing 158 2017 Vice Champion
3 Anthony DAVIDSON Toyota Gazoo Racing 143 3rd place in 2017 Championship
4 André LOTTERER Porsche Team 113
4 Neel JANI Porsche Team 113
4 Nick TANDY Porsche Team 113
5 Kamui KOBAYASHI Toyota Gazoo Racing 91.5
5 Mike CONWAY Toyota Gazoo Racing 91.5
6 Ho-Pin TUNG Jackie Chan DC Racing 74.5
6 Oliver JARVIS Jackie Chan DC Racing 74.5
6 Thomas LAURENT Jackie Chan DC Racing 74.5
At the end of the 6 Hours of Shanghai Ferrari secured enough points to be confirmed as the 2017 GT FIA World Endurance Manufacturers Champions. Third and sixth for the two F488s garnered the Italian manufacturer 23 points to leave China with a 48.5 point advantage.
The fight is now on for the Vice Champions position with 6 Hours of Shanghai winners Ford holding on 212.5 points, a slim 1.5 points ahead of Porsche (211 pts), with Aston Martin still in touch on 193 points.
1 Ferrari 261 2017 CHAMPIONS
2 Ford 212.5
3 Porsche 211
4 Aston Martin 193
While the manufacturers title has been decided, there are three driver crews split by just 7.5 points and it could be a ‘winner-takes-all’ scenario at the end of the 6 Hours of Bahrain to decided who becomes the 2017 GT FIA World Endurance Drivers’ Champions.
Third place in Shanghai was enough to keep Ferrari duo Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado at the head of the table, just two points ahead of Fred Makowiecki and Richard Lietz after the Porsche pairing finished ahead of them in second place.
Shanghai race winners Andy Priaulx and Harry Tincknell closed the gap on their rivals in the Ford GT and are just 7.5 points behind Pier Guidi and Calado. Davide Rigon in the no71 Ferrari has a mathematical chance of taking the title as he is still 21.5 points behind his teammates and there are 26 points on offer in Bahrain.
Six hours of racing in Bahrain will decide the destination of the fourth FIA World Endurance Championship title.
1 Alessandro PIER GUIDI Ferrari 135
1 James CALADO Ferrari 135
2 Frédéric MAKOWIECKI Porsche 133
2 Richard LIETZ Porsche 133
3 Andy PRIAULX Ford 127.5
3 Harry TINCKNELL Ford 127.5
4 Davide RIGON Ferrari 113.5
5 Sam BIRD Ferrari 113
FIA World Endurance Trophy – LMP2
Another victory for the no31 Vaillante Rebellion Oreca propelled the Swiss team into the lead of the LMP2 title race. Drivers Bruno Senna and Julien Canal are also leading the driver’s championship, just 4 points ahead of the no38 Jackie Chan DC Racing crew of Oliver Jarvis, Ho-Pin Tung and Thomas Laurent, who could only finish 4th in China.
A return to the podium for the first time since round 4 in Germany has kept the no38 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca at the top of the leader board but victory in Japan for the no31 Vaillante Rebellion Oreca-Gibson has closed the gap to just 10 points with two races of the 2017 season remaining.
The no36 Signatech Alpine is still mathematically able to take the title leaving China on 138 points, 23 behind the leaders with 26 points still to be won.
1 Bruno SENNA 161
1 Julien CANAL 161
2 Ho-Pin TUNG 157
2 Oliver JARVIS 157
2 Thomas LAURENT 157
3 Nicolas PROST 143
4 Gustavo MENEZES 138
1 31 Vaillante Rebellion 161
2 38 Jackie Chan DC Racing 157
3 36 Signatech Alpine Matmut 138
FIA World Endurance Trophy – LMGTE Am
Victory for the no98 Aston Martin Racing Vantage in China has propelled Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy and Matthias Lauda into the lead of the LMGTE Am title race by 10 points over the no77 Dempsey-Proton Racing crew of Christian Ried, Marvin Dienst and Matteo Cairoli, who finished third at the end of the 6 Hours of Shanghai.
In the Teams Championship, the no98 Aston Martin Racing Vantage holds a similar 10 point advantage over the 77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche, with the no61 Clearwater Racing Ferrari just one point behind the Porsche.
1 Mathias LAUDA 166
1 Paul DALLA LANA 166
1 Pedro LAMY 166
1 Christian RIED 156
1 Marvin DIENST 156
1 Matteo CAIROLI 156
3 Keita SAWA 147
3 Matt GRIFFIN 147
3 Weng Sun MOK 147
1 98 Aston Martin Racing 172
2 77 Dempsey – Proton Racing 162
3 61 Clearwater Racing 161
The final round of the 2017 FIA World Endurance Championship is the 6 Hours of Bahrain, which will take place on Saturday 19 November and is Round 9 of the nine race 2017 season.