2014 FIA WEC: Shanghai Six Hours preview
Porsche Team Manthey will be hoping for better luck this weekend as the 2014 FIA World Endurance Championship heads to China for the sixth round of the season.
The factory Porsche 911 RSRs enter the six-hour race at Shanghai International Circuit on the back of winless streak that extends all the way back to round one at Silverstone, when the no. 92 and no. 91 Porsche 911 RSRs finished first and second respectively.
Since then, both Porsche Team Manthey entries have scored second place finishes, with the no. 92 machine also achieving third place in this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans thanks to Marco Holzer, Richard Lietz and Frédéric Makowiecki.
Last time out in Fuji though, both Porsche 911 RSRs missed out on the podium after a difficult race in Japan. Lietz and Jörg Bergmeister (who renewed their partnership from 2013 in the USA) finished fourth, while Makowiecki and Patrick Pilet struggled to sixth in the LMGTE Pro class.
In this morning’s two free practice sessions, Makowiecki and Pilet have found themselves second in the GTE Pro timesheets, suggesting that the two Porsche 911 RSRs will enjoy better fortune in Shangai.
However, with rain spoiling much of the practice time (and playing into the hands of the Porsche 911’s superior traction) Sunday’s six-hour battle could prove a different proposition should it be dry.
Porsche currently find themselves second in every LMGTE Pro championship, with Makowiecki sitting 49.5 points behind Ferrari duo, Gianmaria Bruni and Toni Vilander in the drivers’ standings.
Ferrari also leads the way in the manufacturers’ cup, and the teams’ standings. With just 12 hours of racing left in the season after the FIA WEC circus leaves China, Porsche Team Manthey need a good result in Shanghai to keep their championship hopes alive.
Keep on track of all the Porsche motorsport news with our dedicated online coverage and look out for the FIA WEC race report on Monday.