2nd October 2019
Mike Conway and TOYOTA GAZOO Racing return to racing this weekend as the championship arrives in Japan for the second round of the World Endurance Championship - the 6 Hours of Fuji.
The #7 TS050 HYBRID crew of Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and José María López will be looking for back-to-back victories this weekend after the team took maximum points at Silverstone following the first pole position of the year and an exciting four-hour battle for victory at Mike’s home race.
However, this weekend comes with an added challenge. As championship leaders, they will have incurred the maximum success handicap of 1.4secs per lap, whilst the sister #8 TS050 HYBRID is penalised by one second per lap at Fuji Speedway.
The success handicaps come in addition to the established Equivalence of Technology, which already means the TS050 HYBRIDs are both up to 108kg heavier than their non-hybrid LMP1 rivals, who additionally are allowed to use up to 61% more fuel.
This weekend’s race marks the final time for the iconic TS050 HYBRID to compete in Japan. Fuji Speedway has a special place in the history of TOYOTA’s most successful endurance race car as the location of its, and Mike’s, first victory in 2016. The car, which has won a total of 14 WEC races since then, is undefeated at Fuji Speedway.
Fuji Speedway, the 2.835-mile, 16-turn circuit standing in the foothills of Mount Fuji, is Mike’s most successful track on the calendar having made three trips to the LMP1 podium, twice as the victor in 2016 and 2018.
Practice begins on Friday with three hours of action split into two sessions, at 03:00 (BST) and 07:30 respectively. Qualifying takes place on Saturday at 05:10 with racing starting at 03:00 on Sunday morning.
“I love going to Fuji Speedway, not only because it is our home race and we have had a lot of success there over the years. It’s also great to see everybody at Higashi-Fuji who put together our hybrid powertrain; that is always a cool experience. Obviously we are looking for another victory after starting the season with the win at Silverstone. It’s the last time for the TS050 HYBRID to race at our home track so I hope it’s a special weekend for the fans.”