Hybridized: Introducing Toyota’s Racing TeamBy marian on June 30th, 2015
Every vehicle that rolls out of Toyota is sure to be the best automobile, the way every Toyota Altis in the Philippines is, which is why one should not wonder why the Toyota TS040-hybrid won the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) last year. Wonder what keeps this car going? Check out the team that drives it forward.
The English racer has won three British championships, one Italian, an FIA European Cup and of course, the WEC. When not busy racing, you can probably find him mountain biking, running, or spending time with his wife Carrie and their two kids in their Northamptonshire home.
Perhaps one of the best moments of Sebastian Buemi’s life is winning the WEC 2014 championship along with teammate Anthony Davidson. The Swissman currently resides in Monaco and has the motto of “Keep the Pressure On!” He also has the superstition that his left foot must be the first limb to touch the ground as he gets out of the car.
Racing is sure to be in his blood as Kazuki Nakajima’s father is the first Japanese Formula 1 racer, Satoru Nakajima. He placed first in his racing debut in the 2003 Formula debut and a highly respectable fourth in the 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans. On the days he isn’t behind the wheel, you might see him playing a game of football or just roaming around, taking in the sights.
With his enormous talent on the street circuit, British racer Mike Conway had no problem shifting from rallycar to racecar. He lives in Sevenoaks, England with his two dogs. On his rest days, he can be found mountain biking or road cycling.
Imagine winning the pole position in Le Mans not just once but thrice in a row. This is what Frenchman Stéphane Sarrazin was able to achieve. He currently resides in his hometown of Barjac, France with his wife Camille and their two children.
On board the Toyota team is the youngest Le Mans winner, Alex Wurz. He achieved it in 1996 at the age of 22 and won the title again in 2008. The Austrian leads an active lifestyle as on his days off, you can see him competing in triathlons, doing a little kite surfing or mountain biking. He currently resided in Monaco with his wife Julia and their three children.
Joining the team this year as the test and reserve driver is Kamui Kobayashi. The 28 year old placed first in the 08-09 GP2 Asia series and seventh in the 2013 WEC.
Bringing with him years of experience with hybrid technology is the new president Toshio Sato who takes over the duties of Yoshiaki Kinoshita.
The Frenchman currently serves Toyota Motorsport GmbH as Vice President and Technical Director as well as team manager of the sportscar program.
As one of the top dogs of Toyota Motorsport GmbH, John Steeghs is Team Manager of Management and Logistics.
Rob Luepen is the Team Director and the Vice President of Toyota Motors GmbH.
The General Manager of the Motorsport Unit Development Division is Hisatake Murata, also called the father of Hybrid racing by Race Engine Technology magazine.
The Chief Project Leader of the Race Cars of Toyota Motorsport GmbH, John Litjens has made major innovations in design, contributing to the 2014 WEC win.
Without the car, there is no team. We present to you the Toyota TS040-hybrid. In the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) of 2014, it finished in first place and became the first Japanese automobile company to do so, proving to the world that Toyota has produced one of the best hybrid sportscars history will ever see. The Le Mans Prototype (LMP1) vehicle has a carbon fibre composite body that houses a 90 degree V8 naturally aspirated engine, making it one of the fastest on the track.
If you are betting on racing this year, you know what team to bet on: the Toyota Hybrid Racing team.