Le Mans 24 Hours – The 2012 Entries

This afternoon Vincent Beaumesnil and Fabrice Bourrigaud presented the 56 selected cars for the 80th 24 Hours of Le Mans and 9 reserve cars.

In June 15 LMP1, 18 LMP2, 9 GTE PRO, 13 GTE AM and 1 ‘CAR DISPLAYING NEW TECHNOLOGIES’ will take to the track and Vincent Beaumesnil, ACO Sports Manager, was very happy with the outcome of the selection: “Once again the field for the 2012 Le Mans 24 hours is of an exceptional level. All fifty-six cars selected are top-class quality contenders from a technical and sporting point of view. This year the predominance of LM P1 and LM P2 prototypes should be underlined, in particular the latter. The regulations, which cap costs in this category, have resulted in a raft of entries from manufacturers and private teams in almost equal measure. Like the ILMC in 2011, the FIA World Endurance Championship is a real driving force behind the entries for the Le Mans 24 Hours. To race in the world championship, first of all you have to compete at Le Mans! The homogeneity of the field already points to an 80th Le Mans 24 Hours that will be more exciting than ever.”

So next to the FIA WEC entrants – what other interesting bits are there this year?

In LMP1 Audi will not only have its two Audi R18 Hybrids, but also its two conventional diesel Audi R18s. A grand total of four Audi’s to race in the 80th edition of the 24 Hours. They will face opposition from a pair of Toyota TS030 Hybrids.

At Le Mans Pescarolo will also work with Dome to run the Dome S102.5 alongside the full season Pescarolo 03. Long-awaited American squad Dyson Racing will finally come to Le Mans. The American Le Mans Series squad has taken up its two entries and will bring two Lola B12/60 Mazda’s to Le Mans.

Rebellion Racing, OAK Racing, Strakka Racing and JRM will complete the LMP1 category.

LMP1 (15 entries)
1 – Audi Sport Team Joest – Audi R18 Hybrid – Andre Lotterer
2 – Audi Sport Team Joest – Audi R18 Hybrid – Allan McNish
3 – Audi Sport Team Joest – Audi R18 – Timo Bernhard
4 – Audi Sport North America – Audi R18 – Oliver Jarvis
7 – Toyota Racing – Toyota TS030 Hybrid – Alexander Wurz
8 – Toyota Racing – Toyota TS030 Hybrid – Hiroaki Ishiura
12 – Rebellion Racing – Lola B12/60 Coupe Toyota – Nicolas Prost
13 – Rebellion Racing – Lola B12/60 Coupe Toyota – Andrea Belicchi
15 – OAK Racing – Oak Pescarolo Judd – Guillaume Moreau
16 – Pescarolo Team – Pescarolo 03 Judd – Emmanuel Collard
17 – Pescarolo Team – Dome Judd – Nicolas Minassian
18 – Dyson Racing Team – Lola B12/60 Mazda – Guy Smith
19 – Dyson Racing Team – Lola B12/60 Mazda – Chris Dyson
21 – Strakka Racing – HPD ARX-03a – Nick Leventis
22 – JRM – HPD ARX-03a – David Brabham

The biggest category at Le Mans this year will be LMP2. Signatech Nissan (Oreca), OAK Racing (Morgan), Gulf Racing Middle East (Lola) and Greaves Motorsport (Zytek) will all enter two cars.

Seven Oreca 03 chassis will be racing at Le Mans, entered by Signatech, ADR-Delta, Race Performance, Boutsen Ginion Racing, Thiriet by TDS Racing and Pecom Racing. They will be joined by an American pair of HPD-ARX-03b’s, entered by Level 5 Motorsport and Starworks Motorsport. Kolles’ Lotus team was only awarded one entry for its Lola, the second car is on the reserve list. European Le Mans Series entrant Extreme Limite will join with their Norma, with fellow ELMS team Jota accepted with their new Zytek.

LMP2 (18 entries)
23 – Signatech Nissan – Oreca 03 Nissan – Jordan Tresson
24 – OAK Racing – Morgan Judd – Jaques Nicolet
25 – ADR-Delta – Oreca 03 Nissan – John Martin
26 – Signatech Nissan – Oreca 03 Nissan – Franck Mailleux
28 – Gulf Racing Middle East – Lola B12/80 Nissan – Fabien Giroix
29 – Gulf Racing Middle East – Lola B12/80 Nissan – Frederic Fatien
31 – Lotus – Lola B12/80 Lotus –Thomas Holzer
33 – Level 5 Motorsports – HPD ARX-03b – Scott Tucker
35 – OAK Racing – Morgan Judd – Olivier Pla
38 – JOTA – Zytek Z11SN Nissan – Sam Hancock
40 – Race Performance – Oreca 03 Judd – Michel Frey
41 – Greaves Motorsport – Zytek Z11SN Nissan – Christian Zugel
42 – Greaves Motorsport – Zytek Z11SN Nissan – Alex Brundle
43 – Extreme Limite Aric – Norma M200P Judd – Fabien Rossier
44 – Starworks Motorsport – HPD ARX-03b – Enzo Potolicchio
45 – Boutsen Ginion Racing – Oreca 03 Nissan – Bastien Briere
46 – Thiriet by TDS Racing – Oreca 03 Nissan – Pierre Thiriet
49 – Pecom Racing – Oreca 03 Nissan – Luis Perez-Companc

In GTE Pro the five entries from the FIA WEC will be joined by the two works Corvettes, the JMW Motorsport Ferrari 458 Italia and a Flying Lizard Motorsports Porsche.

GTE-PRO (9 entries)
51 – AF Corse – Ferrari F458 Italia – Giancarlo Fisichella
59 – Luxury Racing – Ferrari F458 Italia – Fred Makowiecki
66 – JMW Motorsport – Ferrari F458 Italia – Tim Sugden
71 – AF Corse – Ferrari F458 Italia – Andrea Bertolini
73 – Corvette Racing – Corvette C6.R – Antonio Garcia
74 – Corvette Racing – Corvette C6.R – Oliver Gavin
77 – Team Felbermayr-Proton – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Richard Lietz
80 – Flying Lizard Motorsports – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Jorg Bergmeister
97 – Aston Martin Racing – Aston Martin Vantage V8 – Stefan Mucke

In GTE AM the full season FIA WEC runners will get competition from long-time Le Mans entrant IMSA Performance, Belgian team Prospeed Competition as well as a Flying Lizards Porsche, a JMB Racing Ferrari 458 and extra cars from AF Corse and Aston Martin Racing.

GTE-AM (13 entries)
50 – Larbre Competition – Corvette C6.R – Patrick Bornhauser
55 – JWA-Avila – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Paul Daniels
57 – Krohn Racing – Ferrari F458 Italia – Tracy Krohn
58 – Luxury Racing – Ferrari F458 Italia – Pierre Ehret
61 – AF Corse – Ferrari F458 Italia – Robert Kauffman
67 – IMSA Performance Matmut – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Anthony Pons
70 – Larbre Competition – Corvette C6.R – Christophe Bourret
75 – Prospeed Competition – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Paul van Splunteren
79 – Flying Lizard Motorsports – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Seth Neiman
81 – AF Corse – Ferrari F458 Italia – Piergiuseppe Perazzini
83 – JMB Racing – Ferrari F458 Italia – Manuel Rodrigues
88 – Team Felbermayr-Proton – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Christian Ried
99 – Aston Martin Racing – Aston Martin Vantage V8 – Christoffer Nygaard

Highcroft Racing’s Delta Wing is still on schedule to take part at Le Mans – today it was announced that Marino Franchitti will race the car.

0 – Highcroft Racing – Deltawing – Marino Franchitti

That leaves us to the reserve entries – nine in total.

Jetalliance and Status Grand Prix are the first on the LMP reserve list. Both teams likely to run in the ELMS, with Status Grand Prix providing technical support to Dyson Racing in the 24 Hours this year. Murphy Prototypes with an Oreca 03 a complete new teamname and car – for an existiing team. Hope Racing is fourth on the list and it seems unlikely they will join, with the fifth and final LMP reserve the Lotus Lola.

In GTE IMSA Performance Matmut is the first of the reserves with its GTE Pro car, followed by the official Lotus GTE entry, a second Aston Martin Racing Pro entry and the Proton Competition GTE-AM Porsche.

RESERVES (9 entries)
47 – Jetalliance Racing – Lola-Judd – David Heinemeier-Hansson (LMP2)
30 – Status Grand Prix – Lola-Judd – Alexander Sims (LMP2)
48 – Murphy Motorsports – Oreca 03 Judd – Gregory Murphy (LMP2)
5 – Hope Racing – Oreca Swiss HyTech Hybrid – Steve Zacchia (LMP1)
32 – Lotus – Lola B12/80 Lotus – Dariusch Ahrabian

76 – IMSA Performance Matmut – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Patrick Pilet (GTE-Pro)
64 – Lotus Cars LTD – Lotus Evora GTE – Johnny Mowlem (GTE-Pro)
98 – Aston Martin Racing – Aston Martin Vantage V8 – Darren Turner (GTE-Pro)
63 – Proton Competition – Porsche 911 GT3 RSR – Horst Felbermayr Jr. (GTE-Am)

22 Comments on Le Mans 24 Hours – The 2012 Entries

  1. Wow! Audi will compair the Hybrid R18 and the regular one in the same raced! I guess they r preparing in case 3 out of the 4 Audi’s crash out! lets hope the R18 Hybrid is far more superior than the regular one and have a much more speed and fuel economy over the regular Audi R18!
    The BMW M3 GT will not race at Le mans or the Le mans Endurance Series…? thats my favorite team in the GT Pro class!

    *Does anybody know exactly what kind of Hybrid power Audi is working with?

  2. Only 2 diesels? Much more noise then! Be interesting to see the dome-pescarolo, I remember how beautiful the 2008 dome looked, bit of a disappointing GTE field, I hoped the spyker aileron might have featured, and it looks like the Aston vantages will be the v8 versions, not the glorious sounding v12s. Pretty decent field all round though, looking forward to it (even the delta wing!)

  3. Four R18’s, two diesel, two diesel hybrid.

    Odd’s on they’ll win of course but I genuinelly think they’ll be outpaced in qulaifying by both the Toyotas and ‘time attack’ special Dome which has been developed to stay upto the latest spec, Toyota in particular seem confident in their cars pace vs the Audi. The HPD’s won’t be far behind and could be the best petrol finishers.

  4. Both LMP fields look good (I for one don’t care about GT), but I’m a little disappointed to see Hope Racing in the reserve list, not the confirmed list. They were the first team to run a hybrid, and while it wasn’t successful, they put a lot of work into that car. Now that Toyota and Audi are running Hybrids, I don’t think the ACO cares about them any more :(

  5. I don’t see the BMW M3 GT race in the 2012 race in the Le mans race this year, they were on Podium in 2011 race! Audi ( both regular and hybrid ) will probably b out paced in practice, testing, and qualifying…. I wish they cared more about their lap times… if they are fastst lap by lap, and most fuel efficient with their ultra reliable car… it should be somewhat of an east win! I want to compare teh Diesel Hybrid Audi’s to the regular Audi’s and compare the Diesel Hybrid Audi to the Hybrid Toyoya. Audi should run longer laps thet Toyoya because they have a diesel! we shall see!

  6. Chris dyson and guy smith are in different cars! Normally to maximize chances, most teams use tried and true formulas. So it’s surprising they are in different cars. Maybe one car will be filled with a couple of well heeled drivers and the other completed with 2 other fast drivers.

  7. @Bamba:
    This is just done to fulfil the regulation about nominating one of the drivers per car when applying for the entry. If you enter two cars and have only decided so far about two of the six drivers, you just split them between the cars. That doesn’t necessarily mean they will really be in different cars when the race weekend starts. That was the same last year, the driver/car combinations were changed in many teams.

  8. I don’t remember many teams where the named drivers were changed. The only times it happened was when the entry was withdrawn and the driver drove in another team.

  9. It doesn’t seem to make sense that there’s a factory Aston Martin GTE entry on the reserve list. For all the commitment prodrive has gave to the race, and the usual quality of their entries (safe for last year), they should have been an automatic entry.

    Sure all the WEC entries have to be entered in the race, but i think this is becomeing a problem. If WEC entries are taking precedence over ALMS and LMS teams that could slowly kill off those series.

    Any entry by JMB or AF Corse in the GTE-AM ranks is likely to finish well down the order or not finish at all. Sure they can field a competitive entry with the best of them, but they will also make an entry for anyone so long as the price is right.

  10. I agree with you @Bamba, and its also a surprise that Lotus is on the reserve list despite investing in a new car.

    Also, whats the story with Spyker? I thought they were coming back in 2012 with a new car.

  11. BMW is not running at Le Mans this year because they have committed to the 2012 DTM (the German Touring Car Championship).

  12. Both Aston Martin and Lotus already have 1 entry each. Better to only give them one each than make someone else miss out.

  13. Japan has really taken over the LMP1 class. Aside from Audis, Oak-Pescarolo and the Pescarolo-Peacarolo cars everything else is powered by a japanese branded power plant.

  14. @Bamba

    So? It doesn’t make much difference. Also, I wouldn’t say most of the field has a Japanese engine. The Dome is powered by a Judd, and HPD is more still more Acura than Honda. Besides, what would you rather: Audi being the only competitive car, or Toyota, Mazda and Honda?

  15. @Bamba and @SchellZ:
    Even after Honda’s and Toyota’s withdrawal from F1, there are still a lot of “racers” in these companies, and prototype racing is just the alternative they could convince their CEO’s to support – and: the Japanese car companies always like to compete against each other, so no surprise they are all in the same championship. For example, the main reason why Mazda is supporting a Dyson entry for Le Mans will be the fact that after the entry of Toyota, there will be much TV and press coverage of Le Mans in Japan.

  16. I was just making a remark. Nothing wrong with it, but it’s very unusual.

    Whether Acura or Honda the final decisions are still made from headquarters in Japan. Funding is needed for all the logistics.

    Dyson wouldn’t have bought 2 new rides and entered lemans without proper funding…which was probably greenlighted from japan.

    Judd is the engine in the Dome but they could have used anything they wanted. Dome actually worked on the engines in all 4 toyotas.

  17. Actually the JMB and AF-Corse Am entries will probably be the some of the fastest ones there. Aston already has two cars on the list, so the 3rd can be a reserve. Af-Corse’s Am car last year was the dominant car until the pay driver wrecked it, and JMB was also competitive for a while. Anyway, I think its better to let the small teams like JMB and the good teams like AF get entries. Aston does have 2 on there, and you could put money on the 3rd getting in the race through dropouts anyway.

    Also, Dyson and Smith will probably be moved to be in the same car (it has happened before, although not often. i remember the spyker drivers being shuffled around a couple years back when one car was reserve and the other wasnt. They could, however, also be in different cars.

  18. What is wrong with BMW……?Not racing at the 24 hours of Le Mans the endurance race of the world?Or is it because they can not really compete under the real rules of the Automobile Club of the West ?

  19. the race this year was good; Kaz Nakajima could’ve been more observant about traffic on the re-start & avoided hitting the Nissan Delta Wing; would like to see teams like Audi, etc. allowing their drivers to race the last hrs. & try to compete for the win instead of formimg a line-up for a photo-op

  20. ..also, about the entries: I’d like to see the A.C.O. choose its entries for the race plus reserves & bring them to the race; allow all of them to practice & qualify; & then the 55 or 56 fastest start the race; if any qualified cars fail tech inspection afterwards or are too damaged to start, the next fastest non-qualified team takes its place; I think this would make practice/qualifying more interesting

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