WEC unveils 10-car LMP1 field for 2018/19 superseason

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WEC unveils 10-car LMP1 field for 2018/19 superseason
By: Gary Watkins
Feb 9, 2018, 3:10 PM

Eight privateer LMP1 cars will line up against Toyota at the Le Mans 24 Hours next year and in the 2018/19 World Endurance Championship superseason.

Toyota Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid
Ginetta G60-LT-P1
SMP Racing Dallara BR1 LMP1
Start: #7 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi, Jose Maria Lopez leads
Start GTE Pro: #67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT: Andy Priaulx, Harry Tincknell leads
#38 DC Racing Oreca 07 Gibson: Ho-Pin Tung, Oliver Jarvis, Thomas Laurent
#71 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE: Davide Rigon, Sam Bird, #51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE: James Calado, Alessandro Pier Guidi

Confirmation of a second Ginetta from the British Manor team under the CEFC TRSM Racing banner has brought the total of P1 cars for Le Mans and the WEC to 10.

Ginetta test driver Charlie Robertson has been announced for the second of the two cars after Oliver Rowland was confirmed in the other car on Friday morning.

Ginetta boss Lawrence Tomlinson said: “I’m delighted confirm that CEFC TRSM will be running a two-car effort in the WEC and Le Mans.

"Our LMP1 project has brought together some of the brightest stars in motorsport design and engineering, and the next chapter will see CEFC TRSM announcing driving talent of equally high measure."

The pair of Ginetta-Mecachrome G60-LT-P1s from Manor are joined on the LMP1 entry by three other constructors, as expected.

BR Engineering will be represented by a pair of works-entered AER-powered BR1s from the ART-run SMP Racing team, which announced Mikhail Aleshin and Vitaly Petrov as its first two drivers, and a privateer car from US entrant DragonSpeed with a Gibson engine.

Rebellion Racing is returning to P1 after a championship-winning assault on the LMP2 class in 2017 with a pair of its own Gibson-engined R13s developed by Oreca.

The German-based ByKolles squad is back with a solo ENSO CLM-Nissan P1/01, with team regular Oliver Webb the first confirmed driver.

Manor's increased P1 campaign explains its absence from the LMP2 entry list, despite its initial plan to remain in the secondary prototype division.

New entries are DragonSpeed with an Oreca-Gibson 07 and Larbre Competition, which was originally planning a Le Mans-only assault, with a Ligier-Gibson JS P217.

These additions have resulted in a seven-car P2 entry, despite the graduation of Rebellion and Manor to P1.

The seven full WEC entries will be joined by an additional 13 P2s for Le Mans in June.

These include a pair of cars entered under the Jackie Chan DC Racing banner, which gained two guaranteed entries for the French enduro for its class successes in LMP2 and P3 in this winter's Asian Le Mans Series.

Its entries have been taken over by Ligier, though team boss David Cheng will race for the team after stepping down from the full-season line-up to concentrate on a management role.

The US JDC-Miller squad, which was awarded a guaranteed entry by IMSA, has not taken up its slot.

Ferrari to run extra factory cars at Le Mans

The factory AF Corse team will upgrade its GTE Pro assault to three cars for Le Mans in response to the four-car assaults from Ford and Porsche.

Ferrari regular Toni Vilander, who has raced with Risi Competizione at Le Mans for the past two years, is listed as the additional driver in the third car, which is numbered #52.

The extra Ferrari means that there will be 17 GTE Pro cars on the grid for Le Mans.

The regular WEC GTE Pro roster, which has increased to 10 cars with BMW's entry into the series, will be bolstered by the additional cars from Ferrari, Ford and Porsche, as well as the factory Chevrolet Corvette C7.Rs.

Nine cars will race in GTE Am over the 2018/19 superseason, up on last year's five, and will be joined by a further four class entries at Le Mans.

This means there will be an straight 50/50 split between prototypes and GT cars on the Le Mans grid this year.

It had already been confirmed that there would be no experimental 'Garage 56' entry this year.

A reserve list of nine cars, including European Le Mans Series newcomer Racing Engineering in LMP2, has also been announced.

2018/19 WEC entry list:

Team Car Confirmed drivers

LMP1 - 10 cars

1 Rebellion Racing Rebellion R13-Gibson

 Andre Lotterer
 Neel Jani

 Bruno Senna

3 Rebellion Racing Rebellion R13-Gibson

 Thomas Laurent

 Mathias Beche

 Gustavo Menezes

4 ByKolles Racing Team ENSO CLM P1/01-Nismo

Oliver Webb

TBA

TBA

5 Manor TRSM Racing Ginetta G60-LT-P1-Mecachrome

Charlie Robertson

TBA

TBA

6 Manor TRSM Racing Ginetta G60-LT-P1-Mecachrome

Oliver Rowland

TBA

TBA

7 Toyota Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid

Mike Conway

Kamui Kobayashi

Jose Maria Lopez

8 Toyota Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid

Sebastien Buemi
Kazuki Nakajima

Fernando Alonso

10 DragonSpeed BR1-Gibson

Ben Hanley

Henrik Hedman

Renger van der Zande

11 SMP Racing BR1-AER

Mikhail Aleshin

TBA

TBA

17 SMP Racing BR1-AER

Vitaly Petrov

TBA

TBA

LMP2 - 7 cars

28 TDS Racing Oreca 07-Gibson

Loic Duval

Matthieu Vaxiviere

Francois Perrodo

29 Racing Team Nederland Dallara P217-Gibson

Giedo van der Garde

Jan Lammers

Fritz van Eerd

31 DragonSpeed Oreca 07-Gibson

Roberto Gonzalez

TBA

TBA

36 Signatech Alpine Alpine A470-Gibson

Nicolas Lapierre

Andre Negrao

Pierre Thiriet

37 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca 07-Gibson

Jazeman Jaafar

TBA

TBA

38 Jackie Chan DC Racing Oreca 07-Gibson

Ho-Pin Tung

TBA

TBA

50 Larbre Competition Ligier JS P217-Gibson

Erwin Creed

Romano Ricci

Fernando Rees

GTE Pro - 10 cars

51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE

James Calado

Alessandro Pier Guidi

66 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT

Olivier Pla

Stefan Mucke

67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT

Andy Priaulx

Harry Tincknell

71 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE

Sam Bird

Davide Rigon

81 BMW Team MTEK BMW M8 GTE

Martin Tomczyk

Nick Catsburg

Philipp Eng

82 BMW Team MTEK BMW M8 GTE

Augusto Farfus

Antonio Felix da Costa

Alexander Sims

91 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR

Gianmaria Bruni

Richard Lietz

92 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR

Michael Christensen

Kevin Estre

95 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage

Nicki Thiim

Marco Sorensen

 Darren Turner

97 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage

 Jonathan Adam

Alex Lynn

Maxime Martin

GTE Am - 9 cars

54 Spirit of Race Ferrari 488 GTE

Giancarlo Fisichella

Francesco Castellacci

Thomas Flohr

56 Team Project 1 Porsche 911 RSR

Jorg Bergmeister

Patrick Lindsey

Egidio Perfetti

61 Clearwater Racing Ferrari 488 GTE

Weng Sun Mok

Matt Griffin

Keita Sawa

70 MR Racing Ferrari 488 GTE

Motoaki Ishikawa

Olivier Beretta

Eddie Cheever III

77 Dempsey-Proton Racing
Porsche 911 RSR

Matteo Cairoli

TBA

TBA

86 Gulf Racing Porsche 911 RSR

Michael Wainwright

TBA

TBA

88 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR

Matt Campbell

TBA

TBA

90 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage

Euan Hankey

Salih Yoluc

Charlie Eastwood

98 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage

Pedro Lamy

Mathias Lauda

Paul Dalla Lana

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About this article

Series WEC
Author Gary Watkins
Article type Breaking news