24 Hours of Le MansFIA WEC

Toyota Retain 2018 Le Mans Advantage Over Privateers

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Toyota Gazoo Racing hold their advantage over the LMP1 Privateers for the 24 Hours of Le Mans
Credit: Race Photography

The Equivalency of Technology released for the LMP1 class ahead of the 2019 24 Hours of Le Mans sees Toyota Gazoo Racing keep their stint length and pit stop advantages over the Privateers.

Even though the Automobile Club de l’Ouest promised there would be closer fighting in LMP1 this year, the fuel capacities of the non-hybrid Privateers has been reduced ahead of the race. This means that, where Toyota have seen no change to their technical regulations since the 2018 rendition (bar the additional 10kg of weight that was added before the Test Day), the Privateers will have less fuel per stint.

In 2018, both turbocharged and normally aspirated engines had a 52.5kg fuel allowance per stint. The latest EoT document now states that turbocharged engines, used by SMP Racing, have dropped to a 48.4kg allowance, and normally aspirated engines, ByKolles Racing Team, DragonSpeed and Rebellion Racing, dropped to 50.8kg.

The prediction is that, with these reductions for the Privateers, the one-lap advantage that Toyota had during stints last year will return for the Super Finale. This was something that the ACO/FIA moved to eradicate ahead of the 2018 6 Hours of Fuji.

A second advantage returns to Toyota in the pit stops. Although both turbocharged and normally aspirated engines see a small increase in the diameter of their refuelling restrictors, the size of the restrictor has been reduced by 0.60mm. The combination of this means that Toyota, as they did in 2018, will have a fastest fuel flow from the fuel rig to the car, meaning they can gain time on their competitors in pit stops.

Last year, Toyota managed to consistently complete their pit stops in under 1m10s, something that none of the Privateers could replicate, beating the rest of the grid by 12 laps. With the faster fuel flow and the additional lap per stint, it is increasingly looking to be another Toyota wash out at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

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The Checkered Flag’s correspondent for the FIA World Endurance Championship. Working in motorsport as a hobby and as a professional, Alice is a freelance digital communications manager, video editor and graphic designer at OrbitSphere. She also runs and manages her own YouTube channel - Circuit The World - with videos on gaming, travel, motorsports and reviews.
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