Toyota down but not out after lacking pace to challenge at 6 Hours of Mexico


Credit: Toyota Gazoo Racing

Toyota Gazoo Racing came away from the fifth round of the 2017 FIA World Endurance Championship licking their wounds after being completely outpaced by the Porsche LMP1 team.

While the #8 Toyota TS050 Hybrid managed to finish the last spot on the podium the team couldn’t hide their disappointment of the weekend where they lacked any pace to challenge their German counterparts.

The fastest lap of the race from the #8 Toyota saw them lap the Mexican circuit with a time of 1m 26.445s, a stark contrast to the lead Porsche with Brendon Hartley setting a time of 1m 25.730s in the opening stages of the race.

“It was a tough race.” said Sébastien Buemi. “We expected it to be difficult after practice and we didn’t have the speed to fight. I am happy with my driving today because I did three stints, so more than three hours.

“I am pleased with the reliability as well because the car ran smoothly; we were just not quick enough.” he added.

Anthony Davidson pinpointed a lack of downforce as the issue as they lost ground during the twisty second sector.

“I personally struggled with the balance of the car; it felt different to what it did in free practice. So a podium for third is the best we could do.” added Davidson.

Team President Hisatake Murata couldn’t hide his feelings after the race, “It has been a very disappointing race.” he said. “We came here with the target of winning and enhancing our chances in both World Championships but we could not challenge Porsche.

“Congratulations to them on the victory. The team, including the drivers, gave their maximum this week but we did not get the result we wanted so we must now prepare for the next race.”

Despite the result Murata remains optimistic as he added, “We do not give up on our dream of winning the World Championship so we will push hard to be competitive in the next race.”