8Star Motorsports Impress In WEC Debut

by James Charman
Potolicchio's team took to the podium on their WEC debut (Photo Credit: Chris Gurton Photography)

8Star Motorsports celebrated its FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) debut with a podium finish at the Six Hours of Silverstone in the hands of Enzo Potolicchio, Philipp Peter and Rui Aguas.

The Floridian organization, partnered with multiple GT champions AF Corse battled back from early electrical issues to the #81 Ferrari 458 Italia, preventing the traction control system from working and dropping the car down the running order.

The weather, however, played its part in helping 8Star Motorsports get to the front end of the field. A sudden downpour early in the third hour of the race saw many teams decide to pit in for wet weather tyres, while the #81 team decided to stay out on dry tyres, a call that elevated them up to second position.

A runner’s up finish looked on the cards for the Ferrari, but contact with the third-placed Corvette caused a left-rear puncture in the final five minutes, forcing an unscheduled pit stop to fix the damage. Aguas rejoined the race on the final lap and brought the car back to the flag for the final podium spot.

“We’re happy with the result,” said team principal Potolicchio. “We finished on the podium after a somewhat difficult race for us. Philipp had a great start but he lost some time trying to figure out what was going on with the electronics. He figured out the problem but it meant we had no traction control. It hurt us a lot. Rui also had a difficult time when it started raining. We decided to stay out on slicks. That was the right call but it was easy for us to make the call from inside the pits. For him in the car, it was complicated.

“It really came down to great calls. The team did an amazing job with the pit stops. We had to change a door because we lost a mirror. In the end, it’s a good result. I’m really happy to have Rui and Philipp on the team. We just need to continue to work hard and give 100 percent again at Spa to continue our fight in the championship.”

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