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WEC Bahrain 2015: Porsche trembles on its second world title

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WEC Bahrain 2015
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D he starting point for the final in the desert was right from a mathematical point of view Simple for Porsche: If the main opponents from the Audi camp, André Lotterer, Benoît Tréluyer and Marcel Fässler, win, Webber, Bernhard and Hartley should have finished in at least fourth place in order to become world champions. Already in the 17th race lap, Timo Bernhard, as the leader of the race, suddenly hit the pit lane: An engine actuator had given up and had to be replaced. The repair took 8.43 minutes - suddenly the championship favorite was last, five laps behind.

Webber holds fifth place in the wounded Porsche

In the further course of the race it became clear that Audi and Porsche were almost equal in speed, and on lap 49 Lotterer conceded his Audi team-mate Lucas di Grassi and led the race. Now the pressure was on Porsche: Webber, Hartley and Bernhard regained their fuel quickly to sixth place, but at halftime Lotterer, Tréluyer and Fässler were still in the lead. But then the second Audi R18 also ran into problems, the front left suspension had to be replaced due to a brake disc problem, the Audi lost nine laps and fell behind the Porsche 919, which was the championship leader.

With the cooler conditions but the second Porsche 919 from Marc Lieb, Romain Dumas and Neel Jani got faster and faster and took the lead. Lotterer, Fässler and Tréluyer were only in second place - and consequently fifth place would easily have been enough for Webber, Hartley and Bernhard. But after 153 laps, about an hour before the end of the race, the new world championship trio ran into problems again.

The actuator had to be replaced again, Porsche lost another 4.51 minutes, but remained in fifth place. And as long as Neel Jani stayed in the lead in the final stint, none of that was a problem, although Webber sometimes lost up to six seconds per lap to the other LMP1 competitors with his obviously wounded car. But because the sister car defended the lead and Webber held fifth place, it was ultimately enough for the drivers' world title.

Porsche also clears the GT

Porsche had a second reason to celebrate: Richard Lietz won the driver's title in the GT class - not an official world title, but at least the GT World Cup. Title for drivers.Because the duo, James Calado and Davide Rigon, who were in second place in the GT drivers' championship, lost a bike in the race and had to make an additional stop, Porsche also won the manufacturers' championship in addition to the drivers' title - as a farewell, so to speak, because the Swabians no longer drive in 2016 fulltime with the GT car in the World Sports Car Championship. As expected, the title in the LMP2 class went to the Ligier trio Bird, Rusinov and Canal; The SMP Ferrari trio Bertolini, Bascov and Shaytar won the title in the GT amateur standings just as definitely.

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