On 29 April, 11 ORECA 07s took the start in the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, final rehearsal ahead of the 24 Hours of Le Mans Centenary. The race ended in Team WRT’s first victory of the 2023 FIA WEC season, and on its home turf!
As usual, the Spa-Francorchamps circuit hosted thrilling action on the track, including a fierce battle in the LMP2 class with nearly 75,000 spectators watching on.
The eventual winner was still unknown just 15 minutes from the chequered flag! The suspense intensified with 10 minutes remaining when the leader, United Autosports’ #23 ORECA 07, and Team WRT’s #41 returned to their boxes.
The Belgian outfit ultimately proved fastest in the quick refuelling game. After leaving pit lane first, Louis Delétraz maintained enough of an advantage over Tom Blomqvist to cross the finish line first with 6.042 seconds to spare.
Inter Europol Competition claimed its first FIA WEC podium thanks to Albert Costa who was able to overtake three opponents in the last hour and clinch third place.
Prema Team’s #9 ORECA 07 finished fourth ahead of United Autosports’ #22, rounding out the top 5. Team WRT’s #31 scored the sixth spot.
Alpine Elf Team clocked the quickest in-race lap with Charles Milesi at the wheel of the #36 for seventh place in front of the #35 and #28 of JOTA Sport.
Despite an impressive performance throughout the round, Prema Team’s #63 ORECA 07 lost all hopes for victory in the final hour after incurring a three-minute penalty for failing to respect the Safety Car procedure.
Only one car was forced to retire: Vector Sport’s ORECA 07 (loss of left rear wheel).
The next round is the race of the century, the 24 Hours of Le Mans Centenary on 10 June with 24 ORECA 07s set to line up on the starting grid, a record!