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http://www.autosport.com/news/report.ph ... r-bykolles

Probably to spare himself some patience. The ByKolles team need to up their game a bit.

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Tue Apr 11, 2017 17:41 pm
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Thing is: it is not only ByKolles which have problems. It is getting a big story in LMP2, reliability... Many teams have problems with that. At Daytona i saw some signs already.

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Tue Apr 11, 2017 20:48 pm
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Sun Apr 16, 2017 08:05 am
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sportscar365.com wrote:
WEC Planning Format Changes to GTE in 2018


The FIA World Endurance Championship is set to undergo a format change to the GTE class next year, aimed to increase the category’s visibility, championship organizers have revealed.

FIA Endurance Commission President Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones said that “creative ideas” are are in the works that would give the factory-backed production-based class, which has received World Championship status this year, more exposure on existing weekends.

“We would expect to see some evolution of the format itself by the beginning of next year,” Owen-Jones said.

“We’re working on the format with some creative ideas to give the GT cars more visibility within the weekends racing to make that very attractive for the fans.”

While Owen-Jones was not drawn on specifics, it’s understood at least one proposal involves a seperate qualifying race for GTE-Pro and potentially GTE-Am cars on Saturday, to set the grid for the six-hour races on Sunday.

“It’s just a little bit too early to say what that exactly will be but we should be able to come back with news on that fairly soon,” Owen-Jones said.

The development came Sunday morning at Silverstone, during a pre-race press conference featuring FIA President Jean Todt and ACO President Pierre Fillon, who signed a contract extension for the WEC through the end of the 2020 season.

At least five manufacturers are set to compete in the GTE-Pro class in 2018, with BMW joining Ford, Ferrari, Aston Martin and Porsche, which has returned to full-factory competition this year with its mid-engined 911 RSR.

It’s understood both Lamborghini and McLaren are also actively evaluating GTE programs, for as early as 2019.

“The GT category could have more visibility than it has now,” Todt said. “The first step in the evolution, together with Pierre, Lindsay and their teams, we will see what could be the next step to highlight the main category [in GTE-Pro].”

Owen-Jones ruled out any format change debuting this year, and would have to go to the World Motor Sport Council for approval.

http://sportscar365.com/lemans/wec/wec- ... e-in-2018/

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Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:27 am
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I haven't seen the race. No broadcast, no quality stream anywhere and for the official WEC stream pack is a credit card needed to pay. Btw: the WEC official stream pack lacks quality too. Looking at the ELMS, IMSA or Blancpain, they do a better job.

sportscar365.com wrote:
Silverstone Post-Race Notebook

***Sunday’s hard-fought Six Hours of Silverstone saw Toyota Gazoo Racing eek out victory over Porsche, in a much closer race that many had expected, including winner Sebastien Buemi. “In a way it scares us a little because we were expecting to be quite a bit quicker than them. It would have been a shame to lose it,” Buemi said post-race.

***The win, Toyota’s 11th in the FIA World Endurance Championship, came despite the TS050 Hybrids sometimes being 3-4 seconds slower in the pits to Porsche, which played the strategy game to get a leg up through portions of the mixed-condition season-opener.

***Timo Bernhard felt the call to put both Porsche 919 Hybrids on Michelin intermediate tires in the third hour was the right decision at the time. “In these races, you have to survive in a way, even though we kept inters on for ten laps, I think it was the right choice,” Bernhard said.

***Toyota’s Anthony Davidson, who claimed his second Tourist Trophy win, admitted conditions were extremely treacherous at that point. “Being from around these parts, I wasn’t quite prepared for the weather,” he said. “Driving on slicks in those conditions was pretty tough; probably some of the toughest driving I’ve ever had to do.”

***It was a strong race for two Asian teams, with Jackie Chan DC Racing becoming the first mainland China-backed organization to claim class victory in the WEC, while a last-gasp effort from Matt Griffin, who entered the final lap third in GTE-Am and emerged as the winner, saw the Malaysian-based Clearwater Racing squad pick up top honors in its series debut.

***A persistent issue with the right-side door latch on the No. 67 Ford GT nearly denied Harry Tincknell GTE-Pro class victory, as the lanky Englishman was forced to reach out and slam the door shut in the closing minutes, after it came loose again. “We were managing the door issue and had some vibrations coming from the front of the car. I can’t believe it,” Tincknell said.

***The door issue resulted in an unscheduled early stop for the pole-sitting Ford, then in the hands of Andy Priaulx, who credited the safety car period in the fourth hour, for track cleanup from Jose Maria Lopez’s accident, on putting them back in contention for the win.

***Pipo Derani, who shared driving duties with Tincknell and Priaulx, scored victory in his team debut, the same feat the rapid Brazilian achieved with Tequila Patron ESM in last year’s Rolex 24 at Daytona.

***Lopez’s accident triggered the medical light onboard his Toyota TS050 Hybrid, which is understood to have prompted the Argentinean to make a trip to the hospital for further evaluation, before being released. The new-for-2017 device, installed in the cockpit and visible through the windshield, is mandatory on every car.

***It was a race to forget for the No. 13 Vaillante Rebellion Oreca 07 Gibson, which had no fewer than three spins or collisions, a 15-second time penalty for avoidable contact, and a trip to the garage for repairs. However, it was the only of the new-look LMP2 cars to hit trouble, and not of the mechanical kind, which many had predicted to be a concern pre-race.

***There were only two retirements, with the No. 92 Porsche 911 RSR of Kevin Estre stopping on-track in the third hour with an engine fire and a bizarre pit-in collision with the No. 97 Aston Martin Vantage V8 ending the No. 4 ByKolles Racing ENSO CLM P1/01 NISMO’s day. The LMP1 Privateer entry completed 155 laps in a respectable run after virtually no running with its new engine package prior to the start of the weekend.

***The FIA and ACO’s contract renewal for the WEC, which extends the agreement through the end of 2020, is possible even with only Porsche and Toyota committed in LMP1, according to series boss Gerard Neveu, who said the requirement for a World Championship “has always” been a minimum of two manufacturers. “Remember how we started?” Neveu said, in reference to the championship’s launch in 2012 with only Audi and Toyota following Peugeot’s last-minute withdrawal.

***FIA President Jean Todt, who addressed the media Sunday morning prior to the race, said he’s confident of a rebound in the top prototype class. “You have people coming, staying and living. It can happen in any category of motorsport. It’s up to us, as the governing body, together with our promoter, the ACO, to make sure we will make a show which will encourage manufacturers and privateers to stay and hopefully some more to come.”

***Further safety improvements will be made at Circuit de la Sarthe ahead of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, with ACO President Pierre Fillon confirming an extended runoff and wall at Karting Corner, adjusted wall at Marshal Post 29 and new pavement laid down from the Ford Chicane.

***FIA Endurance Committee President Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones said they will have to keep a “rigid eye” on LMP2 costs. “The price of the car itself, and the engine and the leasing agreements are absolutely as promised, and consistent with the old LMP2. But perhaps the teams are spending more in other areas, to be competitive. We’ll regulate if we feel we have to,” he said.

***The reported weekend attendance was 50,200 spectators, slightly down from last year’s reported 52,000.

http://sportscar365.com/lemans/wec/silv ... otebook-3/

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Mon Apr 17, 2017 13:36 pm
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https://www.facebook.com/BritishGT/vide ... 310512316/ Live@Oulton Park

updated link

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Mon Apr 17, 2017 13:53 pm
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erwin greven wrote:
I haven't seen the race. No broadcast, no quality stream anywhere and for the official WEC stream pack is a credit card needed to pay. Btw: the WEC official stream pack lacks quality too. Looking at the ELMS, IMSA or Blancpain, they do a better job.

Short highlights package of the weekend's Silverstone (Tourist Trophy) 6 hour race


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Mon Apr 17, 2017 14:15 pm
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John Dagys wrote:
Interest Growing in LMP1 Privateer for 2018

Interest is growing in the LMP1 Privateer ranks, with two additional teams evaluating programs that could result in up to a half-dozen non-hybrid prototypes on the FIA World Endurance Championship grid by as early as next year.

Both KCMG and a Swiss-based group led by Benoit Morand have expressed recent interest, joining the previously announced two-car SMP Racing effort with Dallara-built BR1 prototypes, Manor’s all-but-confirmed program with Ginetta’s new LMP1 customer car and the likely return of ByKolles Racing with an all-new prototype.

While absent from the WEC paddock this year, representatives from the Hong Kong-based team were in Silverstone last weekend to attend the launch of Ginetta’s yet-to-be-named LMP1 non-hybrid.

“KCMG has not drawn a line in endurance racing,” Head of KCMG Composites Philippe Charissoux told Endurance-Info. “Several programs are under consideration for 2018, including LMP1 non-hybrid.

“We are thinking about defining the best program for the team.”

Morand, meanwhile, was also in Silverstone, as the longtime prototype team owner/manager is looking to help lead a yet-to-be-announced team that is also working on an entry for the top prototype class.

“We were working on a LMP2 program,” Morand admitted, “but investors didn’t want to take up the challenge because it’s difficult to sell.

“LMP1 non-hybrid is not simple but the category offers interesting prospects.”

Should Morand’s program get the green light, he said it would likely be announced at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in June.

“It’s an exciting project that takes a long time,” he said. “The key is the engine and we’re working on this subject. Development has already begun with a chassis around the engine.”

It’s understood Morand’s project involves a fourth different constructor in LMP1 non-hybrid, which would join the previously announced or currently operated efforts from ByKolles, Dallara/BR Engineering and Ginetta.

Ginetta Chairman Lawrence Tomlinson, meanwhile, is bullish of being able to ultimately sell up to six of his new cars, which will go on sale for $1.67 million a piece, plus a $750,000 per year engine lease and support program.

“The dream would be three two-car teams, which would be absolutely fantastic,” Tomlinson told Sportscar365.

“Is that possible over the course of the project? Absolutely. Is that possible during the 2018 season? I think it’s optimistic but not impossible.

“I don’t think there’s any doubt in Year One there will be three-plus cars, from the interest out there.”

Manor is poised to add at least one Ginetta to its already existing Oreca 07 Gibson LMP2 program, while LMP1 Privateer stalwarts Rebellion Racing has not ruled out a return to the class by as early as 2019, depending on the level of competition.

Work, meanwhile, continues on the joint Dallara-BR effort, with the Russian-backed prototype set to begin testing later this year, which is likely to follow a similar timeline to the Ginetta.

An extension of the current LMP1 non-hybrid regulations through the end of 2022, although with some engine modifications expected for next year, is understood to be triggering the movement from teams.

http://sportscar365.com/lemans/wec/inte ... -for-2018/

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Thu Apr 20, 2017 15:22 pm
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That would be fantastic.

I feel like top flight prototype racing is always this --><-- close to being great again, but then a manufacturer pulls out, and it all goes back to being a bit one-sided. The privateer class has been depressing the last couple of years.

Come back, Audi!

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Sat Apr 22, 2017 07:59 am
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Watching the Pre-Qualification session: 25 cars within a second!

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Sat Apr 22, 2017 15:29 pm
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