Yesterday, during the WEC season opener at Spa, Kamui Kobayashi surprisingly beached his car in a gravel pit after a crash. Toyota revealed the reason behind the accident.
Toyota’s Hypercar number 7, driven by Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway, and Jose Maria Lopez were the favorites to claim the win at the 6H of Spa. Nonetheless, even after taking a comfortable lead to the race, thanks to a 30 seconds penalty handed to their sister car, the Toyota GR010 number 7 did not manage to win it in Belgium.
There were only 2 hours left to the race when Kamui Kobayashi, with the Toyota number 7, surprisingly failed to brake and completely missed the trajectory. The Japanese driver then revealed that a brake failure made it impossible for him to unlock his tires, causing him to be a spectator of his vehicle drifting away.
“We were struggling with the front end a little bit, but we still had good pace. (…) Then the fronts locked up and I couldn’t unlock them I don’t know why,” Kobayashi told Motorsport.com.
Earlier in the race, the Hypercar squad already had a frustrating moment, when their car was damaged as Jose Maria Lopez was dealing with traffic and collided with Porsche’s GTE Pro challenger number 91. They were handed a drive-through penalty for what was considered a misjudgment.
Nonetheless, this incident was frustrating but not critical for their race. On the other hand, the whole crew of the Japanese hypercar number 7 already suffered braking issues throughout the race and knew it would be a big random factor for their race.
“I had a locking up at Turn 1 and then Jose Maria had his incident with the GT car, so the car was definitely difficult to drive today,” Conway said.
However, this difficult day still proved that Toyota had enough pace to dominate Alpine. On June 12-13, in Portimao, the Japanese manufacturer will have to deal with a new competitor: the Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus, who will make their Hypercar debut in Portugal.