Toyota prepares for Sao Paulo with updated aerodynamic package

A revised TS030 Hybrid for Toyota Racing starting at the Interlagos circuit where they scored their maiden WEC victory last year.

Toyota prepares for Sao Paulo with updated aerodynamic package

Cologne, Germany - Toyota Racing returns to the scene of its first victory for this weekend’s fourth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship, the Six Hours of Sao Paulo.

A year ago, the #7 TS030 Hybrid of Alex Wurz and Nicolas Lapierre earned Toyota Racing’s maiden win from pole position at the 4.309km Interlagos circuit, the first of three wins in the season’s final four races.

This weekend, after a 10-week summer break since finishing second at the Le Mans 24 Hours, the #8 TS030 Hybrid of Anthony Davidson, Sébastien Buemi and Stéphane Sarrazin flies the flag for Toyota Racing in Brazil.

All three drivers have previously raced at Interlagos in other categories, with Stéphane the only one to have competed in an LMP1 car at the anti-clockwise Sao Paulo track, winning the Le Mans Series title there in 2007.

With downforce requirements for the rest of the WEC season different to those at Le Mans, Toyota Racing brings a revised TS030 Hybrid to Brazil.

An updated aerodynamic package has been developed at Toyota Motorsport GmbH (TMG) to generate significantly increased downforce levels compared to the Le Mans-specification car, which was focused more on top speed.

The average speed for the TS030 Hybrid at Le Mans is close to 240km/h, while the shorter, slower tracks which make up the remainder of the WEC season have an average speed of around 180km/h.

The most significant changes include modifications to the front wheel arches, engine cover and rear wing while several other aerodynamic features have been fine-tuned for the different characteristics of the upcoming circuits.

The Toyota Hybrid System - Racing powertrain has also been optimised for the shorter six-hour races, reverting to sprint race settings after the endurance challenge of Le Mans.

Anthony and Sébastien took part in a two-day test at Lausitzring in eastern Germany earlier this month to validate the upgrades. A successful session saw the team complete around 1,500km, with promising results.

Yoshiaki Kinoshita, Team President: “It seems a long time since Le Mans but we have used this break to recover our energy and introduce an updated aerodynamic package which brings more downforce. We know we face a tough challenge to beat Audi but we take inspiration from last year’s great performance in Brazil. Those memories are still fresh in our minds and we will push extremely hard to achieve a similar result.”

Anthony Davidson (#8): “The TS030 Hybrid has changed quite a lot since Le Mans to give us more downforce, which will be important on a short track like Interlagos where grip is very important. Our test at Lausitzring went well; it was great to get back in the car after such a long break and the new package felt good as well. Sao Paulo has always been a great venue for a race and has decided many championship battles. The team had its first victory in the WEC there last year so it has happy memories for us. We know it will be a big challenge but hopefully we will be able to repeat that success this year.”

Sébastien Buemi (#8): “It’s exciting to be racing at Interlagos in the TS030 Hybrid and I can’t wait to experience the performance of our hybrid system at this track. Compared to Le Mans, Interlagos is a lot shorter so traffic will be a big factor in the race; this is where our hybrid boost can be a real advantage. I’m still smiling after our second place at Le Mans and there was a very positive mood during our test at Lausitzring, when we experienced the high-downforce package for the first time. It seems that we have made a good step with these improvements. It will not be easy to win in Sao Paulo but that is the goal we are working towards.”

Stéphane Sarrazin (#8): “I’ve raced at Interlagos previously in several categories, and I have won there in LMP2 so I have some good memories. It’s a fun track to drive on with a lot of undulation and some long, challenging corners. I’m really looking forward to this race, particularly as we have some updates on the car. It will be interesting to see how the changes feel during the first practice sessions, which I am sure will be very busy for us. Even though the WEC has taken a break since Le Mans, I have been busy with three races in the US which has kept me in shape. Now I can’t wait to get back to WEC action.”

Action at Interlagos gets under way on Friday with two 90-minute practice sessions (11.05 & 15.40 local time) while Saturday sees final practice (10.20-11.20) before 25 minutes of qualifying, starting at 15.10. The six-hour race starts at midday on Sunday.


Two Latin American champions prepare for Brazil

Previous article

Two Latin American champions prepare for Brazil

Next article

Young Driver AMR adds Nicki Thiim for Sao Paulo

Young Driver AMR adds Nicki Thiim for Sao Paulo
Load comments
Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood Prime

Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood

Team WRT has been at the forefront of GT racing for years and made a successful move to prototypes for 2021, capped by an LMP2 win on its Le Mans debut. It could've been even better had the race been one lap shorter, when its cars ran 1-2, but the stranger-than-fiction reality has spurred the team to reach greater heights.

Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked Prime

Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked

Toyota scored its fourth Le Mans 24 Hours victory and a 1-2, with the #7 car of Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez beating the #8. But although it looked straightforward from the outside, Toyota faced serious problem that had to be solved with some quick-thinking and ingenuity.

Le Mans
Aug 24, 2021
What we've learned from the Le Mans 24 Hours so far Prime

What we've learned from the Le Mans 24 Hours so far

The new dawn for the FIA World Endurance Championship has arrived at Le Mans, as Hypercars prepare to duel for victory in the world's oldest endurance race. picks out the 10 things we have learned in the build up to the race.

Le Mans
Aug 21, 2021
Le Mans 2021: The team-by-team guide Prime

Le Mans 2021: The team-by-team guide

After a two-month delay due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 Le Mans 24 Hours is set to get underway with the start of the Hypercar era at the Circuit de la Sarthe.

Le Mans
Aug 21, 2021
Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse? Prime

Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse?

One Toyota, normally with the number 7 on the side, always seems to attract the bad luck in the Le Mans 24 Hours. Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez are hoping for a change in fortune this time around, but face significantly more unknowns than in recent years

Le Mans
Aug 19, 2021
Why Glickenhaus should be taken seriously on its Le Mans bow Prime

Why Glickenhaus should be taken seriously on its Le Mans bow

Many were quick to dismiss Glickenhaus when the boutique American sportscar firm's entry into the top class of the Le Mans 24 Hours was announced. It's all-new LMH racer, powered by an engine built by a rally specialist, goes in as the underdog against Toyota but the mathematical odds suggest that it has more than just a faint hope of success.

Le Mans
Aug 18, 2021
How 1971's benchmark Le Mans team lost with the best car Prime

How 1971's benchmark Le Mans team lost with the best car

The JW Automotive Engineering team won twice at the Le Mans 24 Hours with ageing Fords and was considered the heavy favourite to add more victories to its tally after partnering with Porsche. But despite being armed with the all-conquering 917, this formidable combination was never as successful in real life as on the big screen.

Le Mans
Aug 15, 2021
Why Jose Maria Lopez isn’t motivated by emulating Fangio Prime

Why Jose Maria Lopez isn’t motivated by emulating Fangio

Having twice missed out on Formula 1 and reinvented himself as a touring car driver, Jose Maria Lopez has had a rocky ride to becoming a four-time world champion. One more would put him level with his nation's favourite son, but there's another prize he would value far more than the honour of matching Juan Manuel Fangio's tally.

Aug 14, 2021