It's all or nothing for Signatech Alpine Matmut in Bahrain!

It's all or nothing for Signatech Alpine Matmut in Bahrain!

14.11.2017: • Round nine of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) is due to be held this Saturday at the Bahrain International Circuit

•    Round nine of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) is due to be held this Saturday at the Bahrain International Circuit.


•    Having finished on the podium at the last five races, the no.36 Signatech Alpine Matmut crew remains in contention for the world title.


•    Nicolas Lapierre, Gustavo Menezes and André Negrão will be going all out for victory in the season-ending finale!




After beginning back in April at Silverstone, the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) draws to a close this Saturday at the Bahrain International Circuit. This, the ninth round in the land of a thousand and one nights will bring down the curtain on a season that has seen some 72 hours of racing!


As most of the WEC titles were decided two weeks ago in Shanghai, there will be increased interest at this final round in the LMP2 category, which has yet to find its champions.



In the overall standings, the no.31 Vaillante-Rebellion now leads the way with 161 points, compared with 157 for the no.38 Jackie Chan DC Racing and 138 for the no.36 Signatech Alpine Matmut. Only these three crews still have a chance of winning the title claimed by Alpine in 2016.



The 23-point deficit of the French team means no elaborate calculations are required for them this weekend. Nicolas Lapierre, Gustavo Menezes and André Negrão simply must win in the no.36 Alpine A470. They also need the no.31 and no.38 cars to fail to score more than two and six points respectively.



The situation does therefore not favour Signatech Alpine Matmut, but recent history has shown that nothing can be taken for granted. It’s never over until it's over and that's also what makes this sport so exciting! Philippe Sinault's troops will be giving their absolute maximum to set the pace and push the other crews all the way.


The FIA WEC competitors will head out on track for the first time on Thursday for two free practice sessions, one of which will be held after dark. Qualifying will be held on Friday after dusk, following a third practice session. The 6 Hours of Bahrain will get underway on Saturday at 4pm local time (GMT+3), i.e. 2pm French (CET) time. The sun will set shortly afterwards, plunging the track into darkness and the magic of the night.





Quote, unquote



Bernard Ollivier, Alpine Deputy Managing Director



"For this final race of the season, the target is very straightforward: we have to win! It's not only essential in order to have a chance of retaining our title, but it's also very important to finish 2017 on a positive note.



This season, we have seen that the standard has gone up several notches with the arrival of new cars, new teams and several new leading drivers, some from F1. We have held our own by combining performance and consistency, but we come to Bahrain in the role of challengers.



For these final six hours of racing, we are going to ask our three drivers, the mechanics and engineers to give their all to finish the season in style."





Philippe Sinault, Signatech Alpine Matmut Team Principal



"Following the 24 Hours of Le Mans, I had set the target of staying in the title race until the end of the season. I was convinced we could do it and we have managed to get to Bahrain still in with a chance, even if it's only a slim one. To win the title, we have to win and hope that both our rivals suffer setbacks.



We can't control what happens with the others, but we have to give our absolute maximum so that we have no regrets when the chequered flag is waved. The team and the drivers are extremely motivated to do just that. We know the difficulties of the Bahrain circuit very well.



The desert sand makes the track very dry at the start of the weekend and we'll also have to pay careful attention to the engine's air filter system. In addition to the track surface and the heat, the sand also means the circuit is very hard on the tyres."





Schedule (GMT+3)


THURSDAY 16 NOVEMBER



3.00pm: Free practice 1 (90 mins)
7.30pm: Free practice 2 (90 mins)



FRIDAY 17 NOVEMBER


11.20pm: Free practice 3 (60 mins)
5.30pm: LMP1/LMP2 qualifying (20 mins)



SATURDAY 18 NOVEMBER


4.00pm: 6 Hours of Bahrain




Christophe Deville - photo Alpine

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/signatech-alpine-matmut-bahrain-alpine---170204.html

14.11.2017 / MaP

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