TOYOTA GAZOO Racing set for historic double in Bahrain WEC finale

The TOYOTA GAZOO Racing WEC team, partnered by Acronis, enters the final round of championship racing in Bahrain in prime position to record yet another drivers and constructers double.

Over recent seasons, the team has been the dominant force in the most famous endurance series in motorsport, winning the past three constructors titles and no less than four drivers titles.

Most recently, the team achieved a historic fifth consecutive victory at its home circuit of Fuji, meaning an eighth win in nine races and its 37th from 75 hybrid powered WEC races since 2012.

And another victory on Saturday would be the team’s 39th in total and would secure its fifth manufacturers’ and drivers’ World Championship double.

“The whole team is looking forward to Bahrain, which is a fantastic circuit with great facilities. We go there having reached two of our main targets this season; we won Le Mans and at Fuji Speedway,” commented Kamui Kobayashi, Team Principal and car #7 driver.

“It has been a close fight all season so it will not be easy, but we showed at Fuji Speedway that, thanks to the big support of the team members, TOYOTA colleagues and partners, we can deliver a perfect weekend. That will be our target again.”

Now, as the latest title showdown reaches an exciting climax at the 8 Hours of Bahrain this weekend, recent Le Mans winners Sébastien Buemi, Brendon Hartley and Ryo Hirakawa enter the race tied on points with #36 Alpine rivals in a winner takes all encounter.

“Although I have not raced in Bahrain before, I did drive the GR010 HYBRID there last year in a test at the end of the WEC season,” commented debutant and Fuji chequered flag taker Hirakawa.  “It was important for me because it was the first time I felt at home in the car and could show my performance. So I am optimistic for this weekend.

“It has been a close competition all season and I am sure it will be the same in Bahrain, but our team is strong. There is only one race to go and we are in a big fight for the World Championship, so let’s go for it.”

Yet they are not the only Toyota GAZOO RACING team in with a chance of ultimate glory, reigning World Champions Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and José María López retaining a mathematical chance of an incredible third consecutive title.

They certainly arrive in Bahrain needing things to go their way, lying 26 points behind the front runners with 39 points still up for grabs.

Kamui Kobayashi (JPN)
World Endurance Championship.
6 Hours of Fuji
Fuji Speedway, Japan
8th to 11th September 2022

But if their competitors fail to make the chequered flag, the #7 GR010 HYBRID team can still emerge victorious in Bahrain, where the team has been utterly dominant. They have won seven of the 10 WEC rounds there, and five on the bounce at the 5.412km circuit.

“Realistically, the World Championship is over for our car this year so we will concentrate on finishing the season on a high,” commented #7 car driver Mike Conway. “We’ve had some frustrating races but it would be great to go into the winter on the back of a victory.”


Acronis are proud to be the official Artificial Intelligence Partner of the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing team, helping the team perform to the best of their capabilities through machine learning. To find out more, please click here.


Fraser Masefield

Sports news and features writer, web editor and author.