After a two-month break, the new season of the FIA World Endurance Championship kicks-off this weekend at Silverstone.
Because of this, Rick Kiewiet has kindly shared some of his photos from the 2018-19 SuperSeason for you to enjoy.
Pre-Season Prologue: Paul Ricard
2018 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps
Toyota on Top Despite Qualifying Setbacks
The opening round of the FIA WEC 2018-19 SuperSeason took place at the famous Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium.
Manor Motorsport’s start to life in LMP1 suffered a huge blow, as ongoing financial problems meant that they withdrew from the race.
Despite their issues in qualifying, Toyota claimed a comfortable 1-2 finish, with the No.3 Rebellion two laps adrift in third.
The No.1 Rebellion was also disqualified for an excessively worn skid block.
G-Drive’s Great Start in LMP2
Elsewhere, G-Drive Racing triumphed in LMP2, after Racing Team Nederland’s early progress was hampered by reliability problems.
However, as the team were an invitational entry, they didn’t receive any championship points. The No.38 Jackie Chan DC Racing and the No.36 Signatech Alpine rounded up the podium.
Ford and Aston Martin set Early Pace in LMGTE
In LMGTE Pro, Ford Chip Ganassi Racing got the better of the Porsche GT’s in the Arden forest, who were seperated by the No.71 AF Corse.
Aston Martin claimed top honours in LMGTE Am, with TF Sport and Clearwater Racing second and third respectively.
2018 24 Hours of Le Mans
Toyota Claim Long-Awaited Win at Le Mans
Toyota finally overcame their enduring curse at the Circuit de la Sarthe to achieve their maiden win in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The Japanese manufacturer were in cruise control for the whole event. After being four seconds clear in qualifying, the two Toyotas ran off into the distance.
Unsurprisingly, they finished 1-2 with the No.3 Rebellion 12 laps behind in third place.
Post-Race Drama in LMP2
Initially, Roman Rusinov, Jean-Eric Vergne and Andrea Pizzitola claimed victory in LMP2 for G-Drive Racing.
However, post-race scrutineering revealed that the team and the No.28 TDS Racing had illegally modified their fuel rigs. Consequently, both cars were disqualified.
This promoted the No.36 Signatech Alpine of Nicolas Lapierre, Pierre Thiriet and Andre Negrao into first place.
Porsche Achieved LMGTE Double
Porsche proved to be virtually unstoppable at Le Mans in 2018. In LMGTE Pro, their retro-liveried cars claimed a 1-2 finish following an intense battle with Ford and Corvette.
Additionally, Dempsey-Proton Racing also helped the Germans to first place in LMGTE AM.
2019 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps
No.8 Toyota Reigns Supreme
The 2019 edition of the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps was a race typical of the circuit’s history.
Changeable weather conditions added more unpredictability for the drivers and the teams, adding to the excitement amongst racing fans.
Despite these factors, the result at the front was no different. The No.8 Toyota of Sebastian Buemi, Fernando Alonso and Kazuki Nakajima claimed their fourth win of the season.
In LMP2, victory was claimed by DragonSpeed’s Anthony Davidson, Roberto Gonzalez and Pastor Maldonado.
Aston Martin Achieve First Win with Brand-New Vantage AMR
Another close battle in LMGTE Pro saw Alex Lynn and Maxine Martin give Aston Martin their first class win with the Vantage AMR. For context, nine of the ten cars in the field finished on the lead lap.
Dempsey-Proton Complete LMGTE Am Hat-Trick
Elsewhere, Matt Campbell and Christian Reid took their third successive win for Dempsey-Proton Racing in LMGTE Am.
Their triumph at Spa followed their victories in the 6 Hours of Shanghai and the 1000 Miles of Sebring respectively.
2019 24 Hours of Le Mans
Contrasting Emotions as Toyota Make It Two in a Row
For the 87th time, the 24 Hours of Le Mans demostrated the challenges associated with the ultimate challenge of man and machine.
The No.7 Toyota of Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez led most of the race and were in cruise control.
Unfortunately for them, a tyre puncture and a faulty tyre sensor resulted in two unscheduled stops within the final hour.
This handed victory to the sister car of Kazuki Nakajima, Sebastien Buemi and Fernando Alonso for the second year running.
Signatech Alpine Claim Consecutive Le Mans Win in LMP2
In 2019, Signatech Alpine didn’t need the help of a Stewards’ enquiry to win at Le Mans in the LMP2.
Additionally, the French team’s remarkable consistency of finishing every race on the podium also secured them Endurance Trophy.
AF Corse win at Le Mans; Porsche Champions
The No.51 AF Corse of James Calado, Alessandro Pier Guidi and Daniel Serra were victorious in the LMGTE Pro class. This marked the Italian team’s third class victory in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Furthermore, fifth place for Porsche’s Michael Christensen and Kevin Estre was enough for them to secure the GTE Drivers’ Championship.
Team Project 1 Claims LMGTE Am Honours after Keating Motorsports DQ
Keating Motorsport’s switch to the Ford GT seemed to be a masterstroke after they took the chequered flag in LMGTE Am.
However, post-race scrutineering found that their No.85 car had exceeded the permitted fuel capacity during the race.
Consequently, the team were disqualified and gifted the victory to Team Project 1 after already claiming the Endurance Trophy.