The presence of Spanish Fernando Alonso at Toyota GAZOO Racing suggests that the Japanese team will prioritize the performance of the TS050 HYBRID No. 8 that the two-time Formula 1 champion shares with the Swiss Sébastien Buemi and the Japanese Kazuki Nakajima in the 2018 edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The hypothesis has some support for what it would mean for the eastern giant that Nano, who has not won in F.1 for a long time, prevails in the mythical test and because of what happened in the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, in which the Alonso-Buemi-Nakajima trio prevailed as the team stopped the final attack of the other prototype driven by the English Mike conwaythe Japanese Kamui Kobayashi and the Argentine José María López.
At the Le Sarthe circuit that feeling is present, although the crews of both TS050 HYBRIDs affirm that there will be fair play since the most important thing is the triumph of the brand. “Fighting is a word that doesn't fit here. We cannot afford to do something between the two cars that would harm the team ”, Pechito López explained.
“It is not a Toyota against Toyota race, but Toyota against Le Mans, against rivals. We are not alone. It is a 24 hour race. And in the middle of that is Le Mans, which is a cruel test and no one has experienced it more than us. "added the Cordovan when recalling what happened in the 2016 and 2017 editions, in which Toyota was left empty-handed when it seemed to achieve glory.
The three-time WTCC champion admitted that the two Toyota, "They are the fastest, but in resistance the fastest does not always win because many factors have to be dealt with." In addition, he assured that the clear differences that have been manifested in previous batches may not be reproduced in the competition. "In the race there will be less difference than in qualifying, because in this one we can adjust everything to make a great lap, but no more"He said.
Alonso also demonstrated his position on the matter and was very clear: "I also ask the team that there are no orders". In addition, he analyzed how difficult it is to participate in this test and spoke about the need to be vigilant at all times to overcome any inconvenience. “Toyota has done a lot of races at Le Mans and finished no more than 10-15% of the time. That small percentage demonstrates the difficulty of this competition and the unpredictable things that can happen. We know it is a race against Le Mans. Finish and not have a mishap is practically impossible. You have to overcome if problems arise and keep a cool head and solve them ", has wished.
Will there be team orders at Toyota? Only Le Mans will have that answer ...