The 2016 European le Mans Series pays its annual visit to the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps for Round Five of a closely fought season.
Racing has been highly competitive across all three classes, none more so than LMP2 where Thiriet by TDS Racing took the victory last time out and now lead G-Drive Racing by nine points in the LMP2 Teams Classification. G-Drive had set its sights firmly on winning the 2016 LMP2 Teams Classification and Simon Dolan, Harry Tincknell and Giedo van der Garde will settle for nothing less than the win at the classic circuit.
Continue reading The European Le Mans Series Returns To Spa For Round Five (23.09.16)
The Michelin GT3 Le Mans Cup visits Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps for the first time in its inaugural season.
The new-for-2016 Cup has provided excellent racing on some of the most iconic circuits in the world and the Belgian round will surely be no exception.
12 cars will take to the grid for Saturday September 24’s two-hour race.
Belgium-based Autoclub Excelsior joins the Cup for this round, bringing its Aston Martin Vantage GT3 with the driver line-up of Michael Schmetz and Tim Verbergt.
Missing from the grid will be the #75 Optimum Motorsport Audi R8 LMS which was piloted by Flick Haigh and Joe Osbourne at Le Castellet. However, the team has made clear that its presence at Circuit Paul Ricard was a precursor to a possible full-season entry next year.
Also missing at Spa will be the #7 BMS Scuderia Italia Ferrari F458 GT3.
Surrey, UK-based TF Sport currently lead the Teams Classification, 15 points ahead of SMP Racing who are currently on 52 points. After clinching the British GT Championship at Donington Park two weeks ago, TF Sport’s confidence will be sky-high that the Michelin GT3 Le Mans Cup is now within its grasp.
The SMP racing driver pairing of Aleksey Basov and Victor Shaitar will, however, be champing at the bit to bring the fight to TF Sport after their victory at Le Castellet last time out. Basov and Shaitar currently lead the Drivers Classification on 77 points, 10 points ahead of the TF Sport driver pairing of Salih Yoluc and Euan Hankey.
First Practice begins at 11:50 local time on September 23 with qualifying beginning at 11:55 on Saturday September 24.
The lights go out for the two-hour race at 17:30 local time later the same day. It should be a superb race.
SRO, the organiser of the British GT Championship, regarded as the premier national GT championship globally, has announced changes to the GT3 format and classifications.
The intention is to place renewed emphasis on amateur and young professional drivers in the top tier of the championship.
Included in the changes to the format of a race weekend is the additional driving time required by an amateur driver being increased from 50 to 60 minutes, meaning that the compulsory driver change will occur between the 60th and 70th minute in a two-hour race. There will also be an additional 10 minutes of free practice, extending the second FP session to one hour.
A special trophy will also be presented to the winning Silverstone 500 crew, to affirm the significance of the mid-season three-hour race. The newly designed trophy will have the names of winners from 2011 onwards engraved on it.
Perhaps the most significant change to the structure of GT3 racing will be the introduction of a new Silver/Am classification. This is intended to attract the semi-pro driver who has a budget but lacks experience in GT3 machinery.
Continue reading Championship Organiser SRO Announces Changes To British GT GT3 For 2017 (21.09.16)
The No 1 Porsche Team 919 Hybrid, driven by Timo Bernhard, Mark Webber and Brendon Hartley won the 6 Hours Of The Cicruit Of The Americas, giving Porsche its third win on the circuit.
In second place was the No 8 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 with the driver lineup of Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval and Oliver Jarvis. Taking the final podium spot was the No 6 Toyiota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid piloted by Stephane Sarazin, Mike Conway and Kamui Kobayashi.
Continue reading Porsche Team Takes Victory In FIA WEC 6 Hours Of The Circuit Of The Americas
Audi Sport Team Joest dominated qualifying for the sixth round of the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship, placing the No 7 and No 8 Audi R18s 1st and 2nd on the grid respectively.
The No 7 car was qualified by Andre Lotterer and Marcel Fassler with an average lap-time of 1:45.752 to take pole position by just over two tenths of a second from the sister No 8 car which was qualified by Loic Duval and Oliver Jarvis.
Third on the grid for Saturday September 17s race will be the No 1 Porsche Team 919 Hybrid which was qualified by Timo Bernhard and Brenon Hartley.
In LMP2 Signatech Alpine took pole with its No 36 Alpine A460. with an average lap time of 1:55.892. Manor will be delighted to see its No 44 ORECA 05 second on the LMP2 grid with a 1:56.873. The no 43 RGR Sport by Morand Ligier JS P2 will take third place on the grid with an average 1:56.873 lap-time.
In the LMGTE it was the story of the Aston Martins but three manufacturers were represented at the front of the Pro class.
In GTE Pro the No 95 Aston Martin Racing Racing Vantage GTE with the driver line-up of Nicki Thiim and Marco Sorensen that took pole with an average lap-time of 2:04.610. Second on the grid will be the No 71 AF Corse Ferrari F488 GTE driven by David Rigon and Sam Bird. Third will be the No 66 Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK Ford GT drven by Stefan Mucke and Olivier Pla.
In LM GTE Am Aston Martin Racing again took class pole with the No 98 Dalla Lana, Lamy, Lauda Aston Martin V8 Vantage averaging a lap-time of 2:06.999. Lining up along side them will be the No 88 Abu-Dhabi – Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR driven by Al Qubasisi, Heinemeir Hansson and Estre. Third on the Am class grid will be the No 78 KCMG Porsche 911 RSR driven by Christian Ried, Wolf Henzler and Joel Camathias.
The lights go out for the 6 Hours of The Circuit Of The Americas at 17:00 local time on Saturday September 17.
Black Bull Ecurie Ecosse celebrated a double victory as Rob Bell brought the #70 McLaren 650S GT3 home to win the final round of the 2016 British GT Championship, ahead of the #17 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage GT3 with Jonny Adam at the wheel. TF Sport’s second place ensured that Derek Johnston and Jonny Adam secured the GT3 Drivers Championship and the team won the Teams Championship.
Taking the third step on the podium in GT3 was the #31 Team Parker Racing Bentley Continental GT3 which Seb Morris brought across the line after a solid drive from driving partner Rick Parfitt.
Continue reading Black Bull Ecurie Ecosse Celebrates Double Victory In British GT At Donington As TF Sport Win 2016 GT3 Championship (11.09.16)