What’s better than starting the 2017 World Endurance Championship season at 6 Hours of Silverstone, one of the most famous British circuits that not just welcomes WEC 2017, but also two most premier motorsport events from both sides of motorsport – Formula 1 and MotoGP for 2017.
This was a first for me in the world of prestigious modern races and it really didn’t disappoint; apart from the very British weather (cold wind accompanied by rain) that is. It was not particularly crowded for this first day despite the fact that it was a holiday in England.
Day 1 of the three day event included free practice sessions for all the drivers and teams. From the start, it was clear that the Toyota Gazoo Racing team were in strong position as they led the first session of 2017, with Sebastien Buemi setting a best time of 1 min, 40.104 seconds the the dry and overcast Silverstone circuit.
The Porsche LMP team took the second place with their #2 Porsche 919 Hybrid piloted by Bernhard/Bamber and Hartly. On the other hand, the reigning champion #1 Porsche 919 Hybrid placed fourth.
For LMP2, Mathias Beche claimed the top position onboard the Vaillante Rebellioin ORECA chassis TDS racing with a time of 1 minute, 45.913 seconds while the #37 Jackie Chan DC Racing ORECA finished third in the newer and faster LMP2 cars. Sadly though, the LMP2 reigning champions Signatech Alpine were caught up in technical issues and had to end their day after just 25 laps.
In the LMGTE Pro category, #95 Aston Martin Racing driven by Richie Stanaway put the best laptime of 1 minute, 59.110 seconds while the #66 Ford GT placed second despite of stopping halfway on the track in the middle of the session.
Below is a gallery of some of the best moments from day 1 at the FIA WEC 6 Hour of Silverstone. Enjoy!
2017 World Endurance Championship, 6 Hours of Silverstone. Day 1