Habsburg, Robin Frijns and Charles Milesi claimed victory in final weekend’s Bahrain finale to clinch the championship within the highly-competitive LMP2 class, beating JOTA Sport trio Tom Blomqvist, Sean Gelael and Stoffel Vandoorne by a major 20-point margin.
The outcome capped off a profitable maiden season in prototype competitors for the crack Belgian squad, which additionally clinched the general championship in European Le Mans Sequence earlier this yr with Robert Kubica, Yifei Ye and Louis Deletraz, and victory within the Le Mans 24 Hours.
Requested what message WRT has despatched to the paddock by upsetting the category’s established groups in its debut marketing campaign, Habsburg instructed Autosport: “Be careful guys, the Belgian gang is right here!
“I have been with WRT for some time now and I have been up of their manufacturing facility so many instances. The fellows that work there are medical and that is what acquired them to the place they’re and that is why the paddock widens their eyes.
“I count on that the opponents are going to return again subsequent yr and I want WRT all the perfect with what they’ll do and hopefully I will probably be there with them.”
#31 Staff WRT Oreca 07 Gibson: Robin Frijns, Ferdinand Habsburg-Lothringen, Charles Milesi
Photograph by: JEP / Motorsport Images
WRT endured a tricky begin to the season at Spa-Francorchamps in Might, dropping greater than an hour within the pits with clutch points, earlier than struggling two drivethrough penalties within the subsequent occasion at Portimao, ending in fourth place.
A “strategic mistake” adopted at Monza, the place the staff missed the window to go across the security automobile and misplaced a spot to the United Autosports automobile that went on to win the race.
However WRT was lastly capable of get its act collectively by Le Mans, taking a slim however essential victory over JOTA after its ELMS entry retired from the lead with only a lap remaining within the race.
The Le Mans success turned out to be the turning level of the season for the staff because it went undefeated within the ultimate two rounds of the season in Bahrain on its method to LMP2 title glory.
Habsburg feels WRT’s capability to study from its early season errors was key to overcoming what was a 36-point hole within the standings heading to Le Mans.
“We have been rookies,” he mentioned. “There have been issues to be improved on and we made some errors. It simply exhibits that the staff learns actually rapidly and not one of the errors have been repeated on both aspect and everyone did an ideal job from that time on.
“We had a fast automobile for the final three rounds and that is what issues.
“I believe we should always have gained Monza however there was one thing on our means that did not allow us to win that, we f***** that. We should always have gained Portimao if we hadn’t had the drivethroughs. We knew it was there, it was simply little tidbits that we needed to get out of the way in which.
“Then profitable Le Mans clearly helped us lots within the factors to catch up once more due to the double factors.
“We had an excellent second half of the season. I believe there’s loads of components that performed into that however ultimately it was simply not making any errors and that is what gave us the championship.”