Ferrari wins WEC Manufacturers’ title

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Ferrari sealed the World Constructors’ Championship in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) early this month. The decisive points came in the Six Hours of Shanghai where the two GTE 488s of AF Corse team respectively finished third with Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado and sixth with Davide Rigon and Sam Bird.

This is Ferrari’s fifth WEC constructors’ title (2012, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017) and the 24th overall among the manufacturers’ championships sanctioned by the FIA. The trophy goes in the cabinet along with the seven in the World Manufacturers’ for Makes won between 1953 and 1961, three editions of the International GT Championship (1962, 1963, 1964), four Prototypes titles between 1963 and 1972, three FIA GT Manufacturers’ championships (2006, 2007 and 2010) and two editions of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup (2010 and 2011).

In the GTE-Pro class, the race was difficult for both cars. James Calado had to give way early on to the Ford No. 66 of Olivier Pla, extremely fast on the straight, while Davide Rigon dropped two places, also in troubles because of the 488 GTE’s limited top speed. The first half of the race was a sacrifice one for car No. 51, which started with old tyres so as to have fresh ones for the final stages. Just two tyres were changed at the first two pit stops and only 3 hours from the end the 488 GTE 488 had the chance to lap with four new tyres. The tactics for car No. 71 were more gradual but broadly similar. In the second half of the race, both GTE 488 cars began to climb the standings with No. 51 rising to fourth and No. 71 to sixth.

Near the end, one of the two Fords suffered a tire crisis, which let Pier Guidi take third while Rigon finished in sixth behind the Aston Martin of Marco Sorensen. Victory went to Henry Tincknell and Andy Priaulx in Ford No. 67 but the celebrations were in the AF Corse Ferrari garage.


In the GTE-Pro class, the race was difficult for both cars. James Calado had to give way early on to the Ford No. 66 of Olivier Pla, extremely fast on the straight, while Davide Rigon dropped two places, also in troubles because of the 488 GTE’s limited top speed. The first half of the race was a sacrifice one for car no. 51, which started with old tires so as to have fresh ones for the final stages. Just two tires were changed at the first two pit stops and only three hours from the end the 488 GTE 488 had the chance to lap with four new tires.

The tactics for car No. 71 were more gradual but broadly similar. In the second half of the race both GTE 488 cars began to climb the standings with No. 51 rising to fourth and No. 71 to sixth. Near the end one of the two Fords suffered a tire crisis, which let Pier Guidi take third while Rigon finished in sixth behind the Aston Martin of Marco Sorensen. Victory went to Henry Tincknell and Andy Priaulx in Ford No. 67 but the celebrations were in the AF Corse Ferrari garage.

Battle for drivers’ championship
While result of the Six Hours of Shanghai closed the Constructors’ title for Ferrari, the Drivers’ championship is still open and was decided in Bahrain last weekend.

“We knew that we would have to work hard in Shanghai and indeed it was one of our toughest races of the year. However, our car showed it could rise to the occasion. Thanks to the great work done at Maranello, the extraordinary effort made as always by AF Corse in the management on track of the 488 GTE, to the support of the Michelotto staff and the amazing skills of our drivers we achieved our most important goal,” said Antonello Coletta, head of Ferrari Attività Sportive GT

“We won the Constructors’ championship, moreover with a race to go. Despite our great joy we are not going to lower our guard: there is still the Drivers’ world championship to be won as well as the team title. We will arrive in Bahrain excited and keen to secure an even better close to a season that has already been so positive,” he added.

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