Podium at Sebring for Sebastien Buemi and TOYOTA GAZOO Racing
TOYOTA GAZOO Racing started the 2022 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) with a podium finish from an eventful 1000 Miles of Sebring, which finished early due to a thunderstorm.
A difficult qualifying left the GR010 HYBRIDs in an unfamiliar grid position, with Sébastien starting fourth and Kamui seventh. That did not last long, however. Within four laps Sébastien moved up to third with Kamui just behind in fourth, joining an all-Hypercar battle for the podium positions.
Midway through the fourth hour, the complexion of the race changed. José clashed with a lapped GT car and made contact with the tyre barrier. He attempted to bring the damaged car back to the pits but impacted heavily against the tyre barrier a few corners later, although thankfully he could leave the car unaided and unhurt.
With just over an hour remaining, the threat of lightening caused a red flag and, despite a brief attempt to restart behind the safety car, the race never resumed. The 2022 season continues in Europe, with the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps on 7 May.
“It was a crazy race, and a tough one for the team with the accident of car #7. We were having a good race with the sister car up to that point. But second was the best we could achieve today so we take those points towards the World Championship fight. We knew before coming to Sebring it was going to be a tough one. When you get points like this it is better than nothing, we want to win but it wasn’t possible today, so we move on to the next race.” Sébastien Buemi