Title fight at 300 kph in the foothills of Mount Fuji

The Porsche LMP Team before the race in Japan

Team Principal Andreas Seidl: “In terms of aerodynamics, Fuji Speedway requires contradicting qualities of a race car. 1.5 of the 4.5 kilometre long lap is simply straight on and asks for minimum drag. But the 16 corners require downforce. The regulations allow for two aero kits per season: One is the low-drag Le Mans package and the other one is the high downforce kit. We have carefully analysed data and simulations and have decided to go for our high downforce kit. Within the prescribed possibilities, we will tune it towards medium downforce.”

Drivers Porsche 919 Hybrid car number 1:

Neel Jani (33, Switzerland): “Our first 2017 Asia round will be a very difficult one. Most recently in Austin, Toyota was very strong again, and traditionally they tend to go well in their home race. I think they will be faster than us on the straight. In 2016 lap times were extremely close in qualifying and in the Fuji race. After six hours we had the prototypes of three manufactures reaching the finish line within 17 seconds. On another topic: To view Mount Fuji from the track is just beautiful.”

FIA WEC Austin Porsche 919 Hybrid, Porsche LMP Team (2): Earl Bamber, Timo Bernhard, Brendon Hartley; Porsche LMP Team (1): Neel Jani, Andre Lotterer, Nick Tandy
Porsche 919 Hybrid, Porsche LMP Team (2): Earl Bamber, Timo Bernhard, Brendon Hartley; Porsche LMP Team (1): Neel Jani, Andre Lotterer, Nick Tandy

André Lotterer (35, Germany): “In 2003 I had a life changing experience in Fuji. Back then I did a Formula Nippon test and after that stayed for three years, living in Gotemba. Today I still race Japanese Super Formula and have a home in Tokyo. I like Japan a lot and so was delighted when Fuji was included in the WEC calendar for 2012. The fans are great and have an absolutely outstanding knowledge. Fuji Speedway is a great track, embedded in a terrific landscape. I especially like the circuit’s fast corners two and three. Unfortunately I haven’t won a race there yet in a LMP1. It’s now time to get that changed.”

Nick Tandy (32, Great Britain): “To me the Fuji race track is an iconic circuit and Japan has such a huge motorsport heritage, this round is always a very important event in the world championship. Obviously the fans are also very enthusiastic and come out in big numbers. I also hope we have a lot of support due to having a ‘local hero’ with André in our car.”

Read more on next page