Ferrari experienced both joy and disappointment on Saturday in the 6 Hours of Bahrain, the final round of the 2015 World Endurance Championship (WEC). The joy was expected, with the Ferrari no. 72 trio of SMP Racing winning the GTE-Am title. The disappointment came with defeat in the constructors' championship due to a glitch on the 458 Italia no. 71 of James Calado and Davide Rigon.
GTE-Am. In the GTE-Am class car no. 72 of SMP Racing concentrated on playing safe. Andrea Bertolini drove first and successfully avoided any problems and accidents before handing over to Aleksey Basov. Victor Shaytar took the wheel during the middle part of the race and continued to keep a handle on the situation staying in contact with the only title rival, the crew of Ferrari AF Corse no. 83, Emmanuel Collard, François Perrodo and Matteo Cressoni, who replaced the injured Rui Aguas. Bertolini completed the race, which was won by the Aston Martin no. 98 of Mathias Lauda, Pedro Lamy and Paul Dalla Lana. The main thing though was the title triumph of Bertolini, Basov and Shaytar, who enjoyed an excellent season with wins at the Nurburgring, Austin and, most importantly, at the Le Mans 24 Hours.
GTE-Pro. The bad luck suffered by one of the two Ferraris in the GTE-Pro class meant the Prancing Horse lost out on the Constructors' title. Car no. 51 of Gianmaria “Gimmi” Bruni and Toni Vilander, with the Finn at the wheel, held top spot at the start, while James Calado in no. 71 pulled off an incredible comeback. Setting off from second last in the grid, he overtook seven cars over the first two laps to land in sixth place and then climbed to fifth. Porsche no. 92 with Patrick Pilet and Frederic Makowicki took first 5 hours and 20 minutes from the end and kept its lead even after the first pit stop in which the AF Corse mechanics performed superbly to put both cars on track in front of the Aston Martins, in second and third position. The third stop came at just over the halfway mark and at that point something went wrong with car no. 71, which lost its left front tyre four laps from the pit stop. Davide Rigon went straight back to the box to limit the damage, but the 458 Italia GTE resumed in sixth, which meant that Ferrari lost its five-point lead in the standings. The no. 92 Porsche won the race ahead of Ferrari no. 51 and the Aston Martin no. 97 of Darren Turner and Jonathan Adam.
Ferrari Press Release