The works Audi R18 e-tron quattro of Marcel Fässler, Benoît Tréluyer and André Lotterer took the overall win at the first FIA World Endurance Championship race of 2015 – the Six Hours of Silverstone. The event again attracted considerable numbers with 45ooo through the gates for the whole event.
Porsche took the front row in qualifying with Marc Webber sat on pole in the #17 919 Hybrid but a rear drive train failure lead to his retirement after 72 laps. Their other LMP1 car went on to grab overall second place with Neel Jani less than five seconds behind the Audi at the flag having driven a very tactical last half hour. The Porsche P1 cars appeared to be quicker on the straights but the Audis were able to catch up under braking.
The two Toyota TS 040 Hybrids took 3rd and 4th with the remaining Audi in fifth, having pitted to repair rear wing damage after 4h30m.
G-Drive Racing started the season with a best possible result as their two Nissan-powered Ligier JS P2s took the LMP2 1st and second spots. Ryan Daziel took the third podium spot with the HPD ARX 03B of Extreme Speed Motorsports where English driver Danny Watts span the Strakka Racing Dome S103 at turn 1 on the first lap, but recovered well to finish 4th in class.
Ferrari, and particularly AF Corse, dominated the GTE Pro class with two Ferrari F458 Italias taking 1st and 3rd with a Team Manthey Porsche GT3 RSR finishing second.
Aston Martin, having been put in the shade in GTE Pro did at least take the GTE Am win with Pedro Lamy taking the flag in a V8 Vantage. The #83 AF Course Ferrari 458 was 2nd and another 458, this time run by SMP Racing, was third.
FIA WEC meets next at Spa-Francorchamps for another six hour race on Sunday 2nd May.
Text and photos: Chris Valentine