WEC must 'wake up' to Toyota-privateer LMP1 gap - Lotterer

The World Endurance Championship must "wake up" and close the gap between Toyota and the non-hybrid LMP1s after the Japanese marque's Le Mans 24 Hours rout, says Andre Lotterer

WEC must 'wake up' to Toyota-privateer LMP1 gap - Lotterer

Rebellion driver Lotterer was in the #1 car that finished fourth overall and 13 laps behind the winning Toyota at Le Mans last weekend, while the third-placed #3 R-13-Gibson was 12 laps down at the flag.

Lotterer's Rebellion team-mate Neel Jani described the 2018 edition of the French classic as the most "boring" he has been a part of due to the inability of the privateer LMP1 squads to threaten the hybrid-powered Toyotas.

Speaking to Autosport, Lotterer reiterated that view and called on the WEC's rulemakers - the FIA and the Automobile Club de l'Ouest - to take action.

"We wanted to be there when something happened to the Toyotas," said Lotterer.

"OK, nothing happened, but it was clear that we couldn't compete against Toyota anyway.

"We didn't stand a chance. Let's face it, it was one of the boring editions of the Le Mans 24 Hours.

"I have to admit that it was difficult to get the most out of every lap. How do you stay motivated?

"Hopefully the ACO and FIA will wake up. It's their choice. Ultimately, it is their show that is not taking place at the moment. They have to know for themselves.

"If everything stays that way, it's going be a super-boring superseason."

ByKolles LMP1 driver Oliver Webb, who didn't get to race at Le Mans this year following an early crash for team-mate Dominik Kraihamer, echoed Lotterer's stance.

"The Toyotas have got it for the year, really," Webb told Autosport.

"Silverstone might show off the Rebellion's high-downforce kit better and the Ginettas, but Toyota will always have an edge.

"Whether we can go longer [on fuel] or have more fuel flow, I don't know. But we need to be a bit closer if it's to stay as one category instead of hybrids and privateers."

Lotterer also criticised a decision to reduce the fuel-flow rate of the non-hybrids ahead of the Le Mans test day compared to the Spa WEC season opener, where Toyota also dominated.

"We expected more from the Equivalence of Technology," said the triple Le Mans winner.

"It was a joke that they took away more performance from the privateers.

"We were on the same level as Toyota? That's bullshit. I don't know why Toyota cried out of fear we might outrun them."

Rebellion's vice president Calim Bouhadra had called on WEC organisers to do more to keep the LMP1 category "attractive" after last month's Spa race, and repeated his viewpoint after Le Mans.

"I think there is great lesson to be learned from the ACO and the WEC on what they expect from a private team like ours for the future," he said.

"I think there are big decisions to make from them."

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Series WEC
Drivers Andre Lotterer
Teams Toyota Racing
Author Jamie Klein
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