Morand Racing will field a Morgan LM P2 in this season’s European Le Mans Series and is now actively preparing for next week’s official test at the Paul Ricard circuit (26/27 March).
Swiss pilot Natacha Gachnang and Frenchman Franck Mailleux will share the Morgan which has been designed and built by OAK Racing’s manufacturer department Onroak Automotive. The French outfit will therefore be relying on Morand Racing and its crew to fly their colours in the ELMS.
The 27-year-old Frenchman meanwhile was Le Mans Series LM P1 vice-champion in 2010 and the ILMC LM P2 class title-winner in 2011, bringing both experience and success to the pairing. Based in Marly, Switzerland, Morand already possesses extensive racing experience. During the past 12 years the team has been involved in numerous categories across the globe including V8Star, Champ Car and Formula Lista Junior.
In 2010 and 2011 they secured several victories in Formula Le Mans and were the first to homologate a hybrid LM P1 car at the 2011 Le Mans 24 Hours.
As such the Swiss squad has proven itself to be both strong and motivated. Combined with a Morgan chassis that showed its potential throughout 2012, these assets are sure to make Morand Racing a fierce competitor in the season to come.
Benoit Morand, Team Manager and co-owner of Morand Racing: “The Morand Racing team that Joe Genoud and I have assembled has big ambitions for the 2013 season.
From the staff we’ve hired to the choice of drivers and of course our technical partners Onroak, Judd and Dunlop, absolutely everything is in place for us to meet our objectives of producing quality work and obtaining strong results. What’s more, all of this will be done within an enjoyable atmosphere.
“The European Le Mans Series will allow us to test ourselves against professional teams on quality tracks. We are aware that the entry list for this year is very competitive and that increases our motivation to fight for victories and the overall podium at the end of the season.
In addition to this, to be the first reserve for the Le Mans 24 Hours, and as such having a genuine chance of competing in this famous race, further motivates the team and all of our partners.”
Jacques Nicolet, Onroak Automotive chairman: “Myself and everyone at Onroak Automotive are delighted that Morand Racing will campaign a Morgan LM P2 in this year’s European Le Mans Series.
Since reaching an agreement with Benoit Morand and Joe Genoud we have worked in perfect harmony, with the tests completed together at Motorland Aragon the proof of this.
The spirit shared by Morand Racing and Onroak Automotive is excellent and will certainly contribute to a quality season for the Swiss team, just as it will for our constructor department.
“Morand’s current line-up of Natacha Gachnang and Franck Mailleux is one of the best that could have been put in place and I’m sure it will be able to fight at the front.
We hope from the bottom of our hearts that the team will be able to make the leap from first reserve to fully-fledged competitors at the Le Mans 24 Hours and thus further increase the number of Morgans entered for the event!”
Onroak Automotive will also be represented in the FIA World Endurance Championship this season with three Morgan LM P2s entered by OAK Racing.
In addition to this the French team will field a further Morgan LM P2 in the Asian Le Mans Series where it will join the Morgan of Chinese squad KCMG, who are also set to contest the Le Mans 24 Hours.
In only its second year of competition, the Morgan LM P2 will be tackling the European Le Mans Series, Asian Le Mans Series and the FIA World Endurance Championship.