Tag Archives: European Le Mans Series

ELMS Showdown On The Algarve (16.10.17)

The 2017 European Le Mans Series arrives at Algarve International Circuit, Portimão, Portugal for its sixth and final round on Sunday October 22.

35 cars will take to the grid across the three classes with 12 entries in the premier LMP2 class, 17 in LMP3 and six in the LMGTE category.

In the LMP2 class entry list the sole change for Portimão in comparison to the previous round is that Ricardo Sanchez replaces Jonathan Hirschi in the #39 GRAFF ORECA 07.

In the LMP3 class Timor Boguslavskly is declared as the third driver in the #5 By Speed Factory Ligier JS P3.

Elsewhere in the LMP3 category, Andrea Dromedari moves from the #12 Eurointernational entry to the sister #11 car to partner Giorgio Mondini. James Dayson joins Ricky Capo and Maxwell Hanratty in the #12 entry.

In the #19 M.Racing-YMR Norman M 30 Erwin Creed replaces Neale Muston.

Looking at the LMGTE class, Will Stevens continues in the #66 JMW Motorsport Ferrari F488 GT3, driving alongside fellow British drivers Robert Smith and Jody Fannin. Beechdean AMR continues its policy of developing new driver talent with the introduction of Immanuel Vinke to drive the #99 Aston Martin V8 Vantage alongside Andrew Howard and Darren Turner.

LMP2.

The #22 G-Drive Racing ORECA 07, on 98 points, has a 18-point advantage over the second-placed #32 United Autosports Ligier JSP217 in the teams standings. The #22 entry has enjoyed great consistency in 2017 with two victories at Monza and Spa-Francorchamps and a trio of second places at Silverstone, the Red Bull Ring and Le Castellet. Memo Rojas, Ryo Hirakawa and Léo Roussel will be looking forward to a trouble-free run in order to secure the title.

The #32 United Autosports entry has also taken two wins but a disappointing sixth place at Monza and a fifth-place finish at Le Castellet means that William Owen, Hugo de Sadeleer and Filipe Albuquerque will, realistically, need a victory and some luck if they are to finish 2017 as team champions.

Sitting in third place on 61 points in the LMP2 teams championship is the #40 GRAFF ORECA 07 with the driver line-up of James Allen, enjoying his first season in prototypes, Richard Bradley and, for the latter half of the season, Gustavo Yacaman. Victory last time out at Spa-Francorchanos means that, conceivably, the #40 crew could finish the season in second place.

LMP3:

United Autosports is looking to repeat its class championship that it won in 2016 when Alex Brundle, Christian England and Mike Guasch dominated the category.

In 2017 it is again the #2 entry that enters the final round leading the championship. The American driver pairing of John Falb and Sean Rayhall have a 19-point lead over the #18 M.Racing-YMR driven by Alexandre Cougnaud and Antoine Jung.

Falb and Rayhall have emulated Brundle, England and Guasch’s consistency of 2016 with victories at Silverstone and Le Castellet and second-place finishes at the Red Bull Ring and Spa-Francorchamps. The #18 M.Racing-YMR entry has taken three podium positions this season with a second-place finish at Monza and third-place finishes at the Red Bull Ring and Le Castellet. A pair of sixth places however, at Silverstone and Spa-Francorchamps, means that the challenge on the Algarve is significant.

LMGTE:

The closest of the three categories, just 17 points separates the top-four in the teams championship with the #90 TF Sport Aston Martin V8 Vantage of Salih Yoluc, Eaun Hankey and Nicki Thiim enjoying a slender one-point advantage at the top of the table over the #66 JMW Motorsport Ferrari F488 GT3 of Robert Smith, Jody Fannin and Will Stevens.

2016 saw a disappointing finish to the European Le Mans Series for Colchester-based JMW Motorsport and, after victory at La Sarthe, the team will be looking to close the season in style. TF Sport, meanwhile, with victories at Silverstone and Spa-Francorchamps and never having been off the class podium this season, will be full of confidence. It will be fascinating battle.

The lights go out for the Four Hours of Portimão at 13:00 local time on Sunday October 22.

Debut ELMS LMP2 Victory For SMP Racing And Dallara (27.08.17)

Photo: Europeanlemansseries.com / Jakob Ebrey

Moscow-based SMP Racing took its debut LMP2 victory in the European Le Mans Series, and the first for the new-for-2017 Dallara chassis. when Matevos Isaakyan, driving the #27 Gibson-powered Dallara P217 he shared with Egor Crudzhev, crossed the line 1:27.817 ahead of the second-placed #22 G-Drive Racing ORECA 07 driven by Memo Rojas, Nicolas Minassian and, taking the final stint, Léo Roussel.

Taking the final podium spot in the LMP2 class was the #32 United Autosports Ligier JSP217 driven to the chequered flag by Filipe Albuquerque, in the car he shares with William Owen and Hugo de Sadeleer. However a post-race penalty for speed limit infractions during the Full Course Yellow periods demoted the #32 entry back to fifth. This promoted the #39 Graff entry piloted by Eric Trouillet, Paul Petit and Enzo Guibbert to the final podium spot.

Continue reading Debut ELMS LMP2 Victory For SMP Racing And Dallara (27.08.17)

European Le Mans Series Action Returns At Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet. (23.08.17)

Photo: Europeanlemansseries.com / Gabi Tomescu/AdrenalMedia.com

The 2017 European Le Mans Series returns for Round Four on August 25 – 27 at the Circuit Paul Ricard at Le Castellet, near Marseille.

35 cars will take to the grid for the Four Hours of Le Castellet on Sunday 27, 12 in the LMP2 category, 17 in the ever-popular LMP3 category and six in LMGTE.

In LMP2 the grid will consist of four ORECA 07s, four Ligier JSP217s and four Dallara P217s. Missing from the Round Four grid will be the #34 Tockwith Motorsports Ligier JSP217, previously driven by Nigel Moore and Philip Hanson, after a disagreement about the use of the car in a promotional video filmed at the Tockwith Motorsports facility at York.

Continue reading European Le Mans Series Action Returns At Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet. (23.08.17)

Double Victory For United Autosports In ELMS Round 3 At Red Bull Ring (23.07.17)

Photo: Jakob Ebrey

The #32 United Autosports Ligier JSP217 took the LMP2 class and overall victory at The Four Hours of the Red Bull Ring from Spielberg, Austria. The #32 car, piloted by William Owen, Hugo de Sadeleer and Filipe Albuquerque crossed the line just 4.554 seconds ahead of the #22 G-Drive Racing ORECA 07 driven by Memo Rojas, Nicolas Minassian and Léo Roussell.

Taking the final step of the class podium was the #39 Graff ORECA 07 driven by Eric Trouillet, Paul Petit and Enzo Guibbert.

2 and 32 a.a. 17.07.23

Photo: Jakob Ebrey

Continue reading Double Victory For United Autosports In ELMS Round 3 At Red Bull Ring (23.07.17)

“I Hope He Won’t Be Out Of LMP2 For Too Long” – Graff’s Matelli Replaced By Gustavo Yacamán For ELMS Round 3 (20.07.17)

Photo: DIRK BOGAERTS / ADRENALMEDIA.COM

After quietly jelling as a driving trio for the first two rounds of the 2017 European Le Mans Series, and following an impressive performance at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the #40 Graff driver line-up of James Allen, Franck Matelli and Richard Bradley is no more.

25 year-old Matelli, who was enjoying his first full season in prototypes, has been replaced by Colombian Gustavo Yacamán.

FM a.a. 17.07.20

Franck Matelli (Photo: FIAWEC.com)

Although only 26 years old, Yacamán is already into his fifth full season in prototypes, having begun his sportscar career with a third place finish in the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona driving alongside Michael McDowall and Filipe Nasr in the Michael Shank Racing Ford-powered Riley.

Richard Bradley, James Allen and Franck Matelli have enjoyed a solid start to the 2017 season. Racing together for the first time at Silverstone in round one of the European Le Mans Series, the #40 Graff ORECA 07 was qualified in P11 and finished fourth overall. For the second round at Monza, Richard Bradley qualified the car in the seventh place with the young Australian James Allen bringing the car home in eighth place.

The trio, a combination of youth and experience, really came together at the 24 Hours of Le Mans this year. The #40 car qualified 13th in class and, in a race where the premier class fell by the wayside and the race could easily have been won by an entry in the LMP2 category, finished sixth overall and fifth in class.

No reason has been given for the replacement of Matelli by Yacamán.

The news of Matelli’s replacement came as a disappointment to Allen, after the Australian formed a solid driving bond with the young Frenchman.

“I am obviously disappointed for Franck and for the team to have a driver change at this point in the series,” said Allen, speaking to EnduranceandGT.co.uk. “Franck is a competent and reliable driver who will be missed. I hope he won’t be out of LMP2 for too long.”

The lights go out for the third round of the 2017 European Le Mans Series, The Four Hours of the Red Bull Ring, at 13:00 local time on Sunday July 23.

European Le Mans Series Returns To Red Bull Ring For Round Three (18.07.17)

Photo: Gabi Tomescu/AdrenalMedia.com

After the dust has settled following the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the European Le Mans Series returns to Austria for Round Three.

36 cars will take to the grid for The 4 Hours of the Red Bull Ring.

13 LMP2 entries are on the provisional entry list for July 23’s race, one more than at the previous round – the 4 Hours of Monza. Joining the grid for the Red Bull Ring will be the #27 SMP Racing Dallara P217, driven by Matevos Isaakyan and Egor Orudczhev.

There are some changes in the driver line-ups in the LMP2 class for the third round. Nicolas Lapierre replaces Ryo Hirakawa in the #22 G-Drive Racing ORECA 07. In the #23 Panis-Barthez Compétition Ligier JSP217 Nathanaël Berthon replaces Matthieu Vaxiviere.

In a surprise move announced last week, Gustavo Yacaman has replaced Franck Matelli in the #40 Graff ORECA 07, to drive alongside James Allen and Richard Bradley.

RBR 2

Photo: Gabi Tomescu/AdrenalMedia.com

The LMP3 category also has a number of driver changes. In the #4 Cool Racing By GPC Ligier JS P3 Gino Forgione is not included in the list of declared drivers. A replacement has yet to be announced.

In the #8 Duqueine Engineering entry, Douglas Lundberg has replaced Henry Hassid and Mikkel Jensen has replaced Maurizio Mediani in the #9 AT Racing entry. Finally the #12 Eurointernational entry sees two-thirds of its driver line-up changed for this round when James Dayson and Ricky Capo replace Maxime Pialat and Maxwell Hanratty.

The LMGTE class sees a field of six entries, one less than the previous round. Missing for the Red Bull Ring will be the #50 Larbre Competition Chevrolet Corvette C7-ZO6.

After two rounds, the drivers of the #22 G-Drive Racing ORECA 07 lead the 2017 European Le Mans Series Trophy for LMP2 drivers. Léo Rousell, Memo Rojas and, absent for Red Bull Ring, Ryo Hirakawa lead the standings on 43 points after taking victory last time out. Second in the drivers standings, and just 10 points behind, is the #32 United Autosports trio of Filipe Albuquerque, Hugo de Sadeleer and Will Owen.

Third in the LMP2 drivers standings is the #49 High Class Racing duo of Dennis Andersen and Anders Fjordbach.

In the LMP3 drivers standings François Heriau, Jean-Baptists Lahaye and Matthieu Lahaye, drivers of the #17 Ultimate Ligier JS P3 head the table on 33 points. Only five points behind is the #18 M.Racing – YMR driving trio of Alexandre Cougnaud, Antoine Jung and Romano Ricci.

The LMGTE drivers standings are led by the #90 TF Sport driver line-up of Salih Yoluc, Euan Hankey and Nicki Thiim.

Track action for the 4 Hours of the Red Bull Ring starts with FP1 on Friday 21 July at 15:20 local time. The three ten-minute qualifying sessions take place on Saturday July 22, starting at 13:45 local time.

The lights go out for the start of the 4 Hours of the Red Bull Ring at 13:00 local time on Sunday July 23.