Marks first podium finish in first season of WEC competition
Sakhir, Bahrain (7 November 2023) – The Heart of Racing Team (HOR) closed out the 2023 season with a strong run to a third place finish during the World Endurance Championship (WEC) season finale at Bahrain International Circuit. This weekend’s eight hour race marked the last of the LMGTE era as the championship utilizes a new ruleset for GT machines in 2024.
Ian James, Alex Riberas and Daniel Mancinelli combined to score the team’s best finish in WEC having made just four starts since taking over the Northwest AMR banner ahead of the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps in April.
The trio made their first laps around the Sakhir desert circuit on Thursday battling unexpected rain that came through the area. Friday saw the third free practice session before James qualified sixth, his second-best qualifying result since joining the series in April.
James was first behind the wheel on Saturday, completing three stints before handing the Aston Martin to Mancinelli on lap 79. Mancinelli and Riberas each completed just over 30 laps before Mancinelli settled in the driver’s seat for two stints. The Italian worked his way to sit second before an incident in Turn 1 forced him back to fifth. Mancinelli fought back to third place before handing the Aston Martin to Riberas for the final hour of the eight hour race. Riberas crossed the finish line in third.
“Definitely happy with how the season finished with a podium in Bahrain,” said Riberas. “I think it is a very very remarkable achievement for the team, especially considering we joined the championship halfway through and with very short notice. The fact that we were able to score a podium is something that the team can be very proud of. It was a very encouraging performance on Saturday that gives us a lot of hope and shows that the team has a lot of potential going into the future. 2024 is going to be an exciting year and I cannot wait, I wish it was already starting.”
The podium result marks the close of a 2023 season that saw the Heart of Racing team effort hard at work in multiple championships around the globe, The season brought scores of highlights for HOR fans and the team is already well along in building the momentum into what should be a very promising 2024 season.
The Heart of Racing thanks our fans and partners, and is looking forward to announcing full 2024 season plans in the near future.