Porsche defends deciding Nurburgring WEC race with team orders

Porsche has defended its decision to impose team orders in its one-two finish in the Nurburgring World Endurance Championship race

Porsche defends deciding Nurburgring WEC race with team orders

At the last pitstop Porsche held Andre Lotterer's #1 car in its pitbox for an additional 20 seconds.

That allowed the Le Mans 24 Hours winning sister car of Timo Bernhard, Brendon Hartley and Earl Bamber, which was trailing by 13s, to take over the lead and win the race.

Following their back-to-back wins and the Le Mans double score, the #2 Porsche crew now lead the championship by 30 points as Sebastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Anthony Davidson - their title rivals in the #8 Toyota - finished a distant fourth at the Nurburgring after a fuel pump issue on the formation lap.

Neel Jani, who shares the #1 Porsche with Lotterer and Nick Tandy, was disappointed with the outcome.

"At the end I think we had the edge, unfortunately Le Mans haunted us," Jani told Autosport.

"The double points, they cost us everything. I think Andre at the end had the fuel to drive back home..."

Porsche LMP1 team principal Andreas Seidl accepted the #1 crew's frustration but defended the decision.

"For sure I can understand it doesn't make them happy, but in the end they understand," he said.

"The most important thing is to be transparent on it. That's how it is in racing.

"One time it is in your favour and another time it isn't.

"Of course it's a luxury problem to have two race cars after six hours within 10s.

"It's simply a confirmation of the great job everyone has done.

"We have six top drivers who all showed they can win.

"It's the result we want for the best positioning in both championships, I couldn't be more happy tonight."

Jani said his crew expected team orders but hoped Porsche might rethink.

"Yes, we knew our destiny, but we still didn't believe it until the end," he said.

"We still had a 13s lead. I think it was clear we had the edge.

"The problem is that Le Mans is double points and it comes early in the year.

"When you don't finish there, you're done for the rest of year.

"Let's hope it doesn't happen [again] until Bahrain, but I don't see it ending soon."

Seidl countered that team orders were common practice among the LMP1 manufacturers.

"It's the same thing that all three manufacturers had been doing since 2014," he said.

He refused to rule out repeating the tactic at future rounds.

"We will always do what is best for Porsche," Seidl said.

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Nurburgring WEC: Porsche follows Le Mans win with one-two finish
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