SMP Racing confirmed on Wednesday that it will enter its Dallara P217 Gibson in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and European Le Mans Series, despite missing the first two ELMS rounds.
The Russian outfit will compete at the French endurance classic in June with its Dallara, before joining the ELMS field at July’s Four Hours of Red Bull Ring.
Thereafter, the No. 27 Dallara will be present at the remaining three ELMS rounds.
This comes after SMP pulled out of the Prologue and season-opening Four Hours of Silverstone last weekend. It is also set to miss next month’s race at Monza.
While SMP’s driver lineup is yet to be announced, the team has indicated that it will include two young drivers from its development program, as well as a more experienced SMP driver.
“The main goals of our program are to support and develop Russian racing drivers,” said team boss Boris Rotenberg.
“Yes, we want to see our drivers taking part in all the important races, including the European Le Mans Series. I am sure they will do their best to achieve all the results that will be set for them.
The ELMS and Le Mans entry this year will serve as development ahead of SMP’s joint LMP1 project with Dallara ahead of the 2018 FIA World Endurance Championship, Rotenberg said.
“Of course, we also do not forget our main project – the BR1 sports prototype that we build together with Dallara to participate in the 2018 FIA WEC,” he explained.
“Considering that our drivers will perform in ELMS and in Le Mans with Dallara thus we also will be able to gather more information for the future car.”