June 15, 2021
WEC

Toyota gets BoP performance hit for Portimao

The Japanese manufacturer’s pair of Le Mans Hypercars will race in the Portimao 8 Hours on June 13 at a minimum weight increased by 26kg from the 1040kg at which it won the 2021 WEC season opener at Spa last month.

It will have to run with approximately 7bhp less at peak power than at the Belgian event, as well as reduced power across the rev range.

The GR010 is also allowed two megajoules less energy per stint – 962MJ compared with 964MJ at Spa – under the Hypercar Balance of Performance released released for the Algarve race on Saturday.

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The measures to slow the Toyota under the BoP coincide with the arrival of the Glickenhaus team in the series for round two in Portugal.

Its Le Mans Hypercar, the Pipo-engined 007 LMH, will be able to run the full 520kW or 697bhp maximum power allowed to cars in the class.

Glickenhaus’s solo entry will also run at the 1030kg minimum weight for two-wheel-drive LMH machinery laid down in the regulations.

It has been allowed slightly more energy per stint, 965MJ, than the Toyota.

The Alpine A480 grandfathered LMP1 car has also taken a performance hit for the Portimao WEC fixture. The Oreca-built car will race at 952kg rather than 930kg it did at Spa.

Its Gibson engine has been reduced in power by approximately 5bhp on the levels at which it raced at Spa and has also been given 2MJ less energy over a stint.

The reduction in the performance of the Toyota and the Alpine for the Portimao race follows a public debate at Spa led by the Japanese manufacturer over the pace of the Hypercars in comparison with the LMP2 prototypes.

Toyota argued that moves to slow P2 machinery from last year had not been enough and that there was not an adequate separation between the two categories.

It was insisted by Toyota Gazoo Racing Europe technical director Pascal Vasselon that the two classes of prototypes needed to be in “different ballparks”.

Vasselon stressed that the arrival of the Glickenhaus would compound the problem because of the need to balance cars in the Hypercar class and suggested that the proximity of the P2s to the new breed of prototype left little margin.

The ACO has stated that it has no intention to further slow the P2s after a series of measures, introduced in two stages, designed to reduce their performance.

Toyota and the ACO suggested at Spa that the demand for P2 teams to run in low-downforce configuration at all races this season could have a greater effect at somewhere like the Algarve circuit than at Spa.

The BoP for the GTE Pro class fought out by just Porsche and Ferrari in Portugal is unchanged.

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