Brussels, 8 June, 2000 - Three Chrysler Viper GTS R/Ts will be defending Viper Team ORECA's class title that the manufacturer has won for the past two years, and two Le Mans Prototypes will be preparing the ground for a shot at outright victory...
Brussels, 8 June, 2000 - Three Chrysler Viper GTS R/Ts will be defending Viper Team ORECA's class title that the manufacturer has won for the past two years, and two Le Mans Prototypes will be preparing the ground for a shot at outright victory next year.
Three privately-entered Chrysler Viper GTS R/Ts will also be taking part in the race. Hugh Chamberlain has entered one car under the Japanese Team Goh entry for Swiss drivers Toni Seiler, Walter Brun and Belgian Didier Defourny, while Paul Belmondo has one entry for Guy Martinolle, Jean-Claude Lagniez and Boris Derichebourg. The Carsport Holland Chrysler Viper will be driven by Mike Hezemans, David Hart and Hans Hugenholtz. Last year, Chrysler Vipers filled eight of the top nine positions in class, including the performances of the private teams.
The ORECA team's main concentration will be the Chrysler Viper GTS R/Ts that compete in the GTS category. Olivier Beretta, Karl Wendlinger and Dominique Dupuy, who won their class at Le Mans last year and won the Rolex 24 at Daytona in February, team up again in the Chrysler Viper, the strongest line-up available to tackle the threat of the formidable General Motors Chevrolet Corvettes.
Viper Team ORECA has twice finished first and second in class and this year will be aiming to fill the top three positions. "We will focus nearly 100 per cent on the Chrysler Viper project," said team director Hugues de Chaunac.
The two Chrysler/Mopar Reynard 2KQ Le Mans Prototypes will be powered by the latest version of the Mopar 6-litre V8 engine that the team tested for the first time at Valencia, Spain last week. The new engine features modified internal parts with an emphasis on reliability rather than performance. "The engine is good," said de Chaunac. "However, it is still very young and it will take time to sort it out. This is a 24-hour test session for the Prototype project and this is a learning year, a transition year."
Scrutineering for the Chrysler Vipers takes place on Monday, June 12, at 16.10, while the Mopar-powered Le Mans Prototypes will be scrutineered on Tuesday at 15.40. First qualifying is on Wednesday, June 14 at 19.00-21.00, second qualifying is from 22.00-24.00. Qualifying on Thursday is from 19.00-21.00 and 22.00-24.00. The race will start on Saturday, June 17 at 16.00.
Drivers Mopar Team ORECA, Le Mans Prototype:
Car 5 Chrysler/Mopar/Reynard 2KQ Mopar 6-litre V8
Yannick Dalmas Nicolas Minassian Jean-Philippe Belloc
Car 6 Chrysler/Mopar/Reynard 2KQ Mopar 6-litre V8
Didier Theys Jeffrey van Hooydonk Didier André Drivers Viper Team ORECA, Chrysler Viper GTS R/T:
Car 51 Chrysler Viper GTS R/T Chrysler 8-litre V10
Olivier Beretta Karl Wendlinger Dominique Dupuy
Car 52 Chrysler Viper GTS R/T Chrysler 8-litre V10
Tommy Archer Marc Duez Patrick Huisman
Car 53 Chrysler Viper GTS R/T Chrysler 8-litre V10
David Donohue Ni Amorim Anthony Beltoise
Private Teams driving Chrysler Viper GTS R/T
Car 54 Paul Belmondo Racing
Boris Derichebourg Guy Martinolle Jean-Claude Lagniez
Car 56 Team Goh Chamberlain Motorsport
Toni Seiler Walter Brun Didier Defourny
Car 57 Carsport Holland
Mike Hezemans David Hart Hugenholtz