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European Le Mans Series

Chandhok Returns to Murphy for Red Bull Ring; No LMP3

Karun Chandhok added to Murphy LMP2 lineup for Austria, but no LMP3 entry…

Photo: Murphy Prototypes

Photo: Murphy Prototypes

Murphy Prototypes has announced its new lineup for the Four Hours of Red Bull Ring this weekend, while it has again postponed the debut of its new LMP3 challenger.

Karun Chandhok makes his return to the Irish squad for the third round of the European Le Mans Series season, for the first time sine last year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The ex-Formula 1 driver has four starts at Le Mans, and currently co-presents Channel 4’s Formula 1 coverage in the United Kingdom.

“It’s great to be back ‘super-subbing’ for Murphy Prototypes this weekend,” he said.

“I haven’t had the chance to compete in sports cars since Le Mans last year, so when Greg [Murphy, team principal] called to ask if I could fill in for him, I was happy to take the opportunity to race with the team again. 

“I was at the Red Bull Ring just two weeks ago for the F1 weekend, so it’s going to be great to actually go back to drive there.

“I had a run around the track when I was there and, having never competed at the circuit before, I’m really looking forward to it.”

Guglielmo Berlotti will join the team alongside Chandhok in the No. 48 Oreca 03R Nissan, which has been fully rebuilt following Le Mans. Berlotti has been racing since 1986, and notably won the Six Hours of Vallelunga last year.

Sean Doyle will complete the lineup, and is the only driver out of the three to have raced with the team so far this year. The 22-year-old Irishman has competed at both ELMS rounds earlier in the season.

“I’m very pleased to have Karun back with us for this event,” said Greg Murphy. “We know him well and he just slots back into the team and always does a great job for us. We’re fortunate to be able to attract such high profile drivers. It’s something we’re very proud of.

“We are also pleased to welcome Guglielmo for the first time and to have the opportunity to include Sean in our line up again as part of our on-going young driver development program.”

The debut of the new Ave-Riley AR-2 has yet again been put off due to ongoing testing. In contrast to earlier in the season, the team will not use a different LMP3 chassis but instead will solely focus on its LMP2 Oreca this weekend.

Tony Ave has told Sportscar365 that the plan is to debut the AR-2 at the Four Hours of Spa in September.

Jake Kilshaw is a UK-based journalist. He is a graduate of Politics and International Relations.

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