The Porsche Motorsport outfit will go into an emotional final race of the 2017 FIA World Endurance Championship as the Bapco 6 Hours of Bahrain marks the teams last LMP1 race of the current era.
“I prefer not to think about the farewell yet.” started Nick Tandy in the #1 car. “The Bahrain race is very interesting anyway because we are racing from day into night. It is normally very hot for the car, the drivers and especially the tyres. It is a challenging race to finish the season at.
“I haven’t been there since 2015 but I was on the podium back then when I came second in the LMP2 class. So this year’s target is to make it onto the LMP1 podium.”
While Tandy and the #1 outfit have been unable to defend their title, it has instead been the #2 Porsche car that had a run of four back-to-back victories in the middle of the season on their way to another title.
Timo Bernhard, who ends his time with the German manufacture having collected his second drivers championship and first Le Mans win, was also emotional over the parting of the team.
“It is great that we could take both titles in Shanghai. Now we are relieved to give it a go in Bahrain and to fully enjoy our last weekend with the Porsche 919 Hybrid. In other words, we will get the maximum out of it without the pressure of the championship battle.
“In any case it will be a weekend full of emotions. For me, many memories from the first days of the program pop up. These were intense experiences at the beginning. Not easy. When the last stint of the 919 is over, a lot more feelings will come up,” said Bernhard.
“These four – or five years if you include development – were just such cool times and I wouldn’t have wanted to miss a single moment. I’m heading very positively to Bahrain, although I know it will not be easy to suppress such thoughts during a very tough six-hour race.”
Porsche’s LMP Team Principal, Andreas Seidl rounded out the sentiment, saying; “Six hours of reliability and faultless work are big challenges of men and machine. Safety has the highest priority.
“Only after the chequered flag can we allow our reflective feelings to break through.”