40 entries for Le Mans Series Official Test Days

Paul Ricard Track

© Planetlemans – Frank Feenstra

After a long winter break the Le Mans Series teams will be back in action at Paul Ricard for the Official Test Days on March 7 and 8. After the entry deadline closed on February 12th a record number of 40 cars had been entered for the opening test weekend of the Le Mans Series 2010 season.

Eight LM P1s, fifteen LMP2/FLMs, six GT1s and eleven GT2s are currently on the Le Mans Series Official Test Days entry list.

LM P1:
In LM P1 eight cars will make the trip to the Southern France. Peugeot and Audi will not be testing their factory cars, but will be present with the customer teams Team Oreca Matmut and Kolles. Kolles will only bring one Audi R10 TDI. Being confirmed for the first races of the season Aston Martin Racing will bring one works car for Primat, Buncombe and Fernandez will also supporting the Signature Plus privateer entry. Beechdean Mansell Motorsport will have former F1 World Champion Nigel Mansell testing alongside his sons. Rebellion Racing will continue its pre-season testing at Paul Ricard with both cars, while Oreca will also bring its Oreca 01 AIM.

LM P1 entries
008 // Signature Plus // Lola Aston Martin // Pierre Ragues – Franck Mailleux
009 // Aston Martin Racing // Lola Aston Martin // Harold Primat – Chris Buncombe – Adrian Fernandez
4 // Team Oreca Matmut // Peugeot 908 HDi FAP // Olivier Panis – Nicolas Lapierre
5 // Beechdean Mansell Motorsport // Ginetta-Zytek 09S // Nigel Mansell – Leo Mansell – Greg Mansell
6 // Team Oreca Matmut // Oreca 01 AIM // Soheil Ayari
12 // Rebellion Racing // Lola B10/60 Rebellion // Nicolas Prost – Neel Jani
13 // Rebellion Racing // Lola B10/60 Rebellion // Andrea Belicchi – Jean-Christophe Boullion
14 // Kolles // Audi R10 TDI // TBA

Officially being named LM P2 there will be five Formula Le Mans cars among the fifteen cars entered for the test days. OAK Racing will most likely have both cars ready for testing , with Nicolet-Hein entered in the #24 and Lahaye-Moreau in the #35. Four Lola’s are currently on the list, three of them coupés. Andy Wallace will join Erdos and Newton at RML, while Racing Box has yet to confirm the exact line-up of its two cars for the test. The fourth Lola is the KSM entry. KSM regular De Pourtales will be joined by Renault Mégane Trophy vice-champion Jonathan Hirschi and Belgian Stephane Lemeret. Quifel-ASM and Team Bruichladdich will bring their Ginetta-Zyteks and Race Performance will be getting the first chance to test against the LMS rivals. Strakka Racing’s confirmed line-up will be in place to give the HPD ARX-01c its European debut.
In the Formula Le Mans sub-class there is no sign of Boutsen Energy Racing. DAMS, Hope PoleVision Racing will both bring two cars, with Applewood Seven entering one.

LM P2 entries
24 // OAK Racing // Pescarolo 01 Judd // Jacques Nicolet – Richard Hein
25 // RML // Lola B08/80 HPD // Tommy Erdos – Mike Newton – Andy Wallace
27 // Race Performance // Radical SR9 Judd // Michel Frey – Ralph Meichtry
29 // Racing Box // Lola B09/80 Judd // TBA
30 // Racing Box // Lola B09/80 Judd // TBA
35 // OAK Racing // Pescarolo 01 Judd // Mathieu Lahaye – Guillaume Moreau
39 // KSM // Lola B08/47 Judd // Jean de Pourtales – Jonathan Hirschi – Stéphane Lemeret
40 // Quifel-ASM Team // Ginetta-Zytek 09S // Miguel Amaral – Olivier Pla
41 // Team Bruichladdich // Ginetta-Zytek 09S // Karim Ojjeh – Jacob Greaves – Thor-Christian Ebbesvik
42 // Strakka Racing // HPD ARX-01c // Nick Leventis – Danny Watts – Jonny Kane
43 // DAMS // FLM 09 // Gary Chalandon – Andrea Barlesi – Alessandro Cicognani
44 // DAMS // FLM 09 // TBA – Nelson Pantiatici
47 // Hope PoleVision Racing // FLM09 // Steve Zacchia
48 // Hope PoleVision Racing // FLM09 // Mathias Becche – Christophe Pillon
49 // Applewood Seven // FLM09 // Damien Toulemonde

Six GT1s have been entered, missing is the ATLAS eFX Team Full Speed Saleen. Larbre Competition will be there however, with Spaniard Antonio Garcia set to share the Saleen S7R with Patrice Goueslard. Four FIA GT1 World Championship cars will also be present at Paul Ricard. Young Driver AMR will enter its Aston Martin DBR9 for its Le Mans drivers Enge, Nygaard and Kox, while Matech Competition will enter one Ford GT and Marc VDS Racing two. Completing LM GT1 is the Luc Alphand Aventures Corvette C6.R, so far without a confirmed driver.

LM GT1 entries
50 // Larbre Competition // Saleen S7R // Antonio Garcia – Patrice Goueslard
52 // Young Driver AMR // Aston Martin DBR9 // Tomas Enge – Christoffer Nygaard – Peter Kox
61 // Matech Competition // Ford GT // Thomas Mutsch – Natacha Gachnang – Cindy Alleman
68 // Marc VDS Racing // Ford GT // Renaud Kuppens – Markus Palttala
70 // Marc VDS Racing // Ford GT // Bas Leinders – Maxime Martin – Eric de Doncker
72 // Luc Alphand Aventures // Corvette C6.R // TBA

Eleven GT2s are on the entry list. Over fifty percent of them are Ferrari F430 GT2s, six in total. AF Corse will bring all three cars to France. Christopher Brück is the only unfamiliar name in the AF Corse line-up. CRS Racing will bring its two cars with the full season LMS drivers joined by the already confirmed Pierre Kaffer as well as Nicola Larini. Hankook-Team Farnbacher is the final Ferrari team, with Farnbacher and Simonsen testing for the German team.
IMSA Performance Matmut will again bring two cars to Paul Ricard, one for Narac-Pilet and one for Balandras-Gibon-Bourret. Team Felbermayr-Proton will only have one car, for Lieb-Lietz. That makes three Porsches 997 GT3 RSR. The final two cars are the works BMW M3 for Müller and Werner and the JMW Motorsport Vantage for Rob Bell. Modena Group Racing, Spyker Squadron, JMB Racing and JWA Racing will not be taking part in the test.

LM GT2 entries
75 // IMSA Performance Matmut // Porsche 997 GT3 RSR // Richard Balandras – Pascal Gibon – Christophe Bourret
76 // IMSA Performance Matmut // Porsche 997 GT3 RSR // Raymond Narac – Patrick Pilet
77 // Team Felbermayr-Proton // Porsche 997 GT3 RSR // Marc Lieb – Richard Lietz
78 // BMW Team Schnitzer // BMW E92 M3 // Jörg Müller – Dirk Werner
89 // Hankook-Team Farnbacher // Ferrari F430 GT2 // Dominik Farnbacher – Allan Simonsen
90 // CRS Racing // Ferrari F430 GT2 // Pierre Ehret – Phil Quaife – Pierre Kaffer
91 // CRS Racing // Ferrari F430 GT2 // Andrew Kirkaldy – Tim Mullen – Nicola Larini
92 // JMW Motorsport // Aston Martin Vantage GT2 // Rob Bell
94 // AF Corse // Ferrari F430 GT2 // Luis Perez Companc – Matias Russo
95 // AF Corse // Ferrari F430 GT2 // Giancarlo Fisichella – Toni Vilander – Jean Alesi
96 // AF Corse // Ferrari F430 GT2 // Christopher Brück – Jaime Melo

On Sunday morning, March 7, 9.30 the track will go green for the first session. All cars will be able to go out for four hours. After a lunch at the panoramic restaurant and a pit walk for the VIP guests the track will re-open for the afternoon session. For teams not running the night test the day will end at 18.30, teams that will run into the darkness will have a third session starting at 19.00 and ending at mid night.

Day two of testing will start on Monday at 9.00, with another four hours of testing on the 5.791 solution 1A track. During the lunch break the annual Le Mans Series pre-season press conference will take place in the Grand Prix Hall. At 14.00 the last, three-hour long session will start…and then it’s still one month before the season kicks off with round 1 at the same circuit.

7 Comments on 40 entries for Le Mans Series Official Test Days

  1. I don’t see why Kolles is running the Audi R10. They don’t get much support from Audi and Audi is not relying on them to help them win Lemans either as Oreca and Peugeot. They’re not getting all the goods, those cars have a lot more pace than we’re seeing.

    They could get more speed and save on costs by running an up to date Zytek, Pescarolo, Aston, Oreca, or Lola. If they can afford to run the R10 they can get their hands on any chassis available.

    The only reason I think anyone would want to run a costlier R10 is for the performance value, but among the elite teams they don’t even stand out.

    Unless maybe Audi is substantially subsidizing the costs or they get some kind of mega discount by getting their lemans cars and DTM cars from Audi.

    Or maybe Dr Colin Kolles just prefers German technology.

  2. Go overuse of exclamation marks!!!!!!!

    In other news, I agree with Bamba on the R10 issue. Would’ve made sense for Audi to lend them the old R15s, surely…?

  3. Dr Kolles is once again running and F1 team (campos). Hopefully he doesn’t decide to pull the plug on the LeMans team if he feels strained with his responsibilities (F1, LMS, DTM).

    He started the LMS team when Force India fired him, here’s hoping the new gig doesn’t sway him over.

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