Sunday, July 14, 2024

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Conway returns to Toyota WEC squad for Brazil round after injury

Toyota driver Mike Conway will return to the cockpit for the Interlagos World Endurance Championship after recovering from injuries that kept him out of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The Briton will regain his seat within the No. 7 Toyota GR010 HYBRID Le Mans Hypercar alongside Kamui Kobayashi and Nyck de Vries for the Sao Paolo 6 Hours in Brazil, round five of the 2024 WEC, on July 14 after missing the beginning at Le Mans last month.

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Conway was unable to participate in a very powerful round of the WEC after suffering a broken collarbone and two ribs in a cycling accident.

The incident occurred just three days before the cars were attributable to take to the Le Mans track, on the Sunday before race week during a test day.

Toyota has opted to call up Jose Maria Lopez to the Hypercar class squad as a substitute of bringing official test and reserve driver Ritomo Miyata into the race line-up.

Lopez, Kobayashi and de Vries finished second within the race, ending 14 seconds behind the winning #50 Ferrari 499P LMH.

Conway said: “It’s great to be back and I can’t wait to get behind the wheel again.

“Watching Le Mans from a distance was difficult for me: I experienced all of the ups and downs with Kamui, Nyck and Jose, nevertheless it was incredibly frustrating to not be a component of it.

    #7 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota GR010 – Hybrid: Jose Maria Lopez, Kamui Kobayashi, Nyck De Vries

#7 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota GR010 – Hybrid: Jose Maria Lopez, Kamui Kobayashi, Nyck De Vries

Photo: Alexander Trienitz

“I all the time knew we were in good hands with Jose. He did an excellent job.

“Now I can’t wait to compete again, fight at the forefront, and hopefully help Kamui, Nyck and the team win the World Championship.”

Kobayashi and de Vries are third within the Drivers’ Championship, behind Porsche drivers Laurens Vanthoor, Kevin Estre and Andre Lotterer, and the winning Ferrari crew of Antonio Fuoco, Nicklas Nielsen and Miguel Molina.

Lopez will return to the motive force’s seat of the Auto Sport Promotion LMGT3 Lexus RC F GT3 alongside Esteban Masson and Takashi Kimura at Interlagos, having been replaced at Le Mans by Jack Hawksworth.

The Argentine driver moved to Toyota’s sister brand Lexus when he was replaced by de Vries within the Toyota Gazoo Racing Hypercar team.

The competition on the 2.68-mile Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace will begin on Friday, July 12 with two 90-minute practice sessions.

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