Asian Le Mans Series Moves To Buriram For Round Three (05.01.17)

The 2016/17 Asian Le Mans Series moves to  Buriram, Thailand for Round Three on January 7 and 8.

27 cars will take to the track for the 4 Hours of Buriram with four entries in the LMP2 class, nine in the LMP3 class, one CN entry, 12 GT cars and one GT Cup entry.

The full 27-car entry list can be found here.

Jackie Chan DC Racing goes to Thailand leading the LMP2 class with its #35 Nissan-powered ORECA 03R, driven by Ho-Pin Tung, Gustavo Menezes and Thomas Laurent. Algarve Pro Racing, with its pair of Ligier JS P2s, are second and third in the standings, with the #25 car, driven by Michael Munemann, Andrea Roda and Andrea Pizzitola on 32 points and the Judd-engined #24 entry, driven by Tacksung Kim, Jonathan Hirschi and Mark Patterson just two points further back.

The popular LMP3 class is currently led by the #26 Tockwith Motorsports Ligier JS P3 on 44 points with the #1 Jackie Chan DC Racing Ligier JS P3 only four points behind.

The GT class is equally close with the #5 DH Racing Ferrari F488 GT3, driven by Stephane Lemeret, Michele Rugolo and Matthieu Vaxiviere,  leading on 37 points, followed by the VS Racing #6 Lamborghini Huracán GT3, with the driver line-up of Kei Cozzolino, Yuhi Sekiguchi and Corey Lewis, in second place in the standings on 27 points.

Round Three of the 2016/17 Asian Le Mans Series takes place at Buriram, Thailand with the 15 minute qualifying session for GT and GT Cup entries taking place on January 7 at 15:45 local time and for the LMP2, LMP3 and CN entries at 16:10. The lights go out for the start of the 4 Hours of Buriram at 12:15 local time on January 8.

Patterson, Boyd And England To Pilot LMP3 For United Autosports In 2017 ELMS (05.01.17)

Christian England, Mark Patterson and Wayne Boyd will complete the United Autosports’ 2017 European Le Mans Series LMP3 driver lineup.

The trio will race the proven Ligier JS P3 in the six-round series, and the team already have its winter test programme in place in order to fully prepare for the defence of its LMP3 championship. They join former Graff Racing drivers John Falb and Sean Rayhall, who will share the team’s other JS P3.

Continue reading Patterson, Boyd And England To Pilot LMP3 For United Autosports In 2017 ELMS (05.01.17)

Autoaid/RCIB Insurance Racing Announces Fuller And Webster For 2017 British GT Campaign (04.01.17)

Team HARD-run Autoaid/RCIB Insurance Racing has announced that Howard Fuller and Sam Webster will contest the 2017 British GT Championship in the GT4 class, driving one of the team’s Ginetta G55 GT4s.

Fuller is no stranger to the Strood-based 2016 GT4 champions, having competed in the British Touring Car Championship and the VW Racing Cup with the team.

Although Sam Webster made his British GT debut in 2016, driving alongside Jamie Stanley in the Fox Motorsport Ginetta G55 GT4 at the final round at Donington Park, 2017 will be Dorset-born young driver’s first full year of car racing.

Both Fuller and Webster are excited at the prospect of challenging for GT4 honours in proven race-winning machinery.

Continue reading Autoaid/RCIB Insurance Racing Announces Fuller And Webster For 2017 British GT Campaign (04.01.17)

RLR Msport/Mike Smith Announces LMP3 Driver Line-Up For 2017 European Le Mans Series (31.12.16)

Darwen-based RLR Msport/Mike Smith has announced that John Farano, Alex Kapadia and Morten Dons will comprise its driver line-up for its LMP3 entry in the 2017 European Le Mans Series.

RLR Msport/Mike Smith completed its debut season in the 2016 European Le Mans Series in 13th place on 17.5 points in the LMP3 Teams Classification. In addition to the LMP3 entry, 2017 will see the team enter a car in LMP2 class as well as compete in the Michelin Le Mans Cup.

Toronto, Canada resident Farano, 57, has previously competed in the 2012 Contintental Tire Sports Car Challenge and won the drivers title in his first year, alongside co-driver David Empringham. He then concentrated on Ferrari racing where he finished second in the 2013 Ferrari Challenge North America and third in 2015. In 2016 he competed in the Ferrari Challenge Europe where he finished third.

Alex Kapadia has an extensive racing pedigree, stretching back to 1998. In 2016 he raced in selected rounds of the Asian Le Mans Series, the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hours, the 24H Series and the European Le Mans Series where he drove the entry. He finished second in the 2016 Radical European Masters Championship in the Raw Motorsport SR8 RX.

Morten Dons drove for RLR Msport in the 2016 European Le Mans Series and also competed in the 2016 MASCOT Danish Thundersport Championship.

“It wasn’t a difficult decision really,” said Dons. “Racing and working with the guys at RLR has been a pleasure. so it made perfectly good sense to just continue the good work and aim high. With this team and driver line-up, I think we will be fighting for the championship.”

Team Principal Nick Reynolds is confident the team has struck the right balance with its 2017 drivers.

“This is the strongest, most balanced driver line up we have been able to bring to ELMS,” said Reynolds. “We look forward with quiet expectation to the 2017 season.”

The 2017 European Le Mans Series opens at Silverstone on April 14-15.

Norma Auto Concept M30 LMP3 On Schedule For 2017 European Le Mans Series Debut (30.12.16)

In a recent interview published on Norbert Santos, founder of the Saint-Pé-de-Bigorre-based company, has said that new M30 LMP3 chassis will be ready in January, in preparation for the 2017 European Le Mans Series season.

The Automobile Club de l’Ouest announced in April 2016 that Norma Auto Concept, founded in 1986 and specialising in the manufacture of prototypes, had been selected as one of the Official Manufacturers of LMP3 chassis.

In the interview, Santos explained the challenges of preparing the new M30 chassis for the forthcoming season:

“That was the initial plan, yes (to be ready for the end of 2016). But it will now be ready in January. We had to incorporate regulatory upgrades related to the driver’s safety. That was not planned and we had to perform a series of calculations over several weeks. Today, we are very happy with the results that we got in simulation. The lights are all green now.”

The success of the LMP3 class in the 2016 European Le Mans Series and interest beyond Europe in North America and Asia means that demand for LMP3 chassis is substantial. Santos is clear about the volume of M30 chassis that Norma Auto Concept will be able to supply.

“Today I can tell you that we will not be able to supply more the fifteen M30s before the start of the European Season, while the demand is much higher.”

“It’s also a choice that we have imposed on ourselves,” continued Santos. “We don’t want in any way to sacrifice the quality of the finished product for the quantity. I can only add that, beyond what has already been announced, we have sold M30s in the U.S. and to other teams in Europe. In the last ten days, three other established European teams have placed orders. And advanced discussions are underway with some others, including in Asia.”

The 2017 European Le Mans Series opens at Silverstone on April 14 – 15.

James Littlejohn To Join Macmillan Racing For 2017 British GT Championship (19.12.16)

Warwick-based Macmillan Racing has announced that James Littlejohn will partner Jack Mitchell as the team prepare for its debut season in the GT3 class in the 2017 British GT Championship. Macmillan Racing will campaign an Aston Martin Vantage GT3.

Littlejohn, also Warwick-based, won the 2016 Radical European Masters title with nine wins over the course of 21 starts and also won the 2012 Radical UK Cup. He has experience in the LMP2 class in the European Le Mans Series, having driven for Greaves Motorsport and Murphy Prototypes in the 2014 European Le Mans Series, as well as extensive experience in historic racing.

“I couldn’t be more pleased,” said Team Principal David Macmillan. “James has a wealth of experience to bring to Macmillan Racing and being able to add him to our GT3 line-up is certain to bring massive benefits, as we make our debut in the class.”

Continue reading James Littlejohn To Join Macmillan Racing For 2017 British GT Championship (19.12.16)