Published on November 21st, 2015 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez
Toyota Gazoo Racing gets going in Bahrain
The #1 of Anthony Davidson, Sébastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima were fifth in opening practice and sixth in the following session on a day when the focus was firmly on race preparation. In the #2, Alex Wurz, Stéphane Sarrazin and Mike Conway returned to the scene of their 2014 race win, finishing the afternoon session in sixth before recording the fifth fastest time in the evening. Saturday’s race represents the end of an era for the team. It is the final race as a professional driver for Alex and also the last time the World Championship-winning TS040 HYBRID will compete.
The team marked Alex’s milestone by coming together for a team photo and presenting him with a special memento this morning; a framed 2015 race overall. First practice began in daylight on a warm afternoon but finished in twilight, while the second session took place entirely in darkness. That gave the drivers a taste of all conditions they will experience in Saturday’s day-night race. Dry and warm weather offered an ideal opportunity to compare various settings on the TS040 HYBRID so both crews wasted no time as they fine-tuned the cars for optimal race set-up.
As well as adjusting aerodynamic and mechanical set-ups, both cars analysed the hybrid settings. The TS040 HYBRID is limited by regulation to a maximum of 3.69MJ of hybrid energy per lap in Bahrain so the team studied the most efficient way to recover and deploy this. With two compounds of Michelin slick tyre available, their performance and durability was also tested. In total, the two TS040 HYBRIDs completed 149 laps of the 5.412km Bahrain International Circuit over today’s three hours of practice, representing 806km.