Motorsport.com understands that SMP will shift their focus away from WEC this year.
Motorsport.com has learned that the new SMP Racing BR01 LMP2 car is planned to race in the 2015 European Le Mans Series rather than the expected FIA World Endurance championship this season.
The team initially planned to compete, as they did in 2014, in the full FIA WEC but a change of emphasis has been agreed by senior management of the team. It is understood that the teams’ long-term plan is to enter the FIA WEC in 2016. However, apart from Le Mans (where it will enter at least one of the BR01 chassis) the team has still not totally discounted an appearance on a one-off basis at either the Spa or Nurburgring rounds.
Two of the Paolo Catone designed LMP2 cars are now set to race in the ELMS with former IndyCar racer Mikhail Aleshin and Maurizio Mediani confirmed among the driver line-up, which is believed is highly likely to also include 2014 drivers Kiril Ladygin and Nicolas Minassian.
A source close to the team also confirmed good progress being made with the new BR01 and the car is expected to have a shakedown test at the beginning of March before the official ELMS test days at the end of the same month.
It is thought that the team will be represented in the 2015 FIA WEC with an LMGTE Ferrari 458 Italia, possibly with an all-Russian driver line-up.