Thiriet By TDS Racing take race win – JMW Motorsport wins LM GTE class
Thiriet by TDS Racing (Oreca-Nissan) led 109 of the 160 laps of the 4 hour Austrian round of the European Le Mans Series (ELMS). Four other teams held the top spot during the race, with all but 25 laps led on Dunlop tyres. The Thiriet win, with a 51 second margin, was an even greater feat due to two extended stops to replace the front nose following issues with a headlight malfunction.
Eurasia Motorsport (Oreca-Nissan) and G-Drive Racing (Gibson-Nissan) crossed the line just seven seconds apart to claim the remaining steps on the podium. G-Drive Racing continues to lead the series with the Thiriet team closing the gap to seven points. The all-Dunlop podium maintains the Dunlop 100% podium success record for ELMS races in 2016.
JMW Motorsport (Ferrari 458 Italia) dominated the class, leading 126 of 151 laps. The race was not without issue, the team involved in contact but recovering well. The only other class leader was the #77 Proton Competition Porsche. The sister #88 Proton car set the fastest class lap of the race, a time over two seconds faster than in 2015. #51 AF Corse finished second and moves into the lead of the championship, overtaking AT Racing who finished third in today’s race.
Double stinting was the strategy of choice in Austria across both classes with the teams very pleased with the tyre performance. The race highlighted the Dunlop performance with durability and pace throughout the double stints being commended by the teams.
Michael Butler, Dunlop Event Manager : “We saw great racing today. The teams were all very happy and it’s great to see such strong performances across all of the different manufacturers. The new surface didn’t give us any issues with all the leading LMP2 cars choosing the softer tyre option and being able to push hard throughout. That both classes had fastest lap times on our tyres that were over two seconds quicker than in 2015 is great, as is the consistent performance which is essential in endurance racing.