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European Le Mans Series

Le Mans Winner Milesi Joins Cool Racing for Spa, Portimao

WEC driver Charles Milesi to contest remaining ELMS races with team run by Lapierre, Coigny…

Photo: MPS Agency

24 Hours of Le Mans class winner Charles Milesi will drive for Cool Racing in the final two rounds of the European Le Mans Series at Spa-Francorchamps and Portimao.

The 20-year-old Frenchman is named on the 39-car entry list for next weekend’s 4 Hours of Spa, while Cool Racing has confirmed that he will also take part in the final race of the season in Portugal driving the No. 37 Oreca 07 Gibson.

Milesi, Robin Frijns and Ferdinand Habsburg won a nail-biting Le Mans LMP2 race last month driving for their FIA World Endurance Championship outfit Team WRT.

FIA Silver-rated driver Milesi is now set for his first ELMS outing of the season and his maiden event with the Cool squad which is co-run by his teammates for the Spa and Portimao races, Nicolas Lapierre and Alexandre Coigny.

Lapierre and Coigny contested the opening four ELMS rounds with Antonin Borga.

Former Japanese Formula 3 racer Milesi made his ELMS debut with DragonSpeed at Monza last year. He also signed with Graff for Le Mans and with Racing Team Nederland for Daytona, before joining WRT for the 2021 world championship campaign.

IDEC Sport’s No. 17 Oreca will be absent from the 4 Hours of Spa, while it’s unclear if the car driven by Kyle Tilley, Ryan Dalziel and Dwight Merriman will complete the season.

An IDEC Sport spokesperson told Sportscar365 that Bronze-rated Merriman has chosen not to take part in the event, while Dalziel also has a clash with his Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS commitments at Watkins Glen next weekend.

The spokesperson added that it has not been confirmed whether the No. 17 car will return for the 4 Hours of Portimao next month.

IDEC Sport’s absence means a total of 14 cars are due to compete for LMP2 class honors, including five in the Pro-Am category for crews with Bronze drivers. 

There is also a TBA slot in the Ultimate Oreca. Francois Heriau is known to be recovering from a broken collarbone that ruled him out of his Le Mans drive with Association SRT41.

LMP3 returns to being the largest ELMS class after a handful of one-off entries from WEC teams made LMP2 the most populous prototype division last time out at Monza.

The only changes in the 16-car LMP3 category are driver shuffles at Inter Europol Competition, which is running two of the Ligier JS P320 Nissans in the field.

Motorcycle racer Mattia Pasini has moved across from the Polish team’s No. 13 car to the No. 14, with Australia’s Aidan Read joining the former crew for his series debut.

The 22-year-old won this year’s 6 Hours of Watkins Glen GTD class race with Turner Motorsport, and has also previously driven LMP2 machinery in the Asian Le Mans Series.

Pasini will team up with Mateusz Kaprzyk, who has piloted the No. 14 car since round two at the Red Bull Ring, and new signing Nicolas Pino from Chile.

The GTE grid features the usual nine cars but with a couple of driver lineup adjustments.

Matt Campbell replaces fellow Porsche factory driver Gianmaria Bruni in the Proton-run WeatherTech Racing Porsche 911 RSR-19 alongside Christian Ried and Cooper MacNeil.

Campbell is a co-driver to Ried in the WEC and to MacNeil in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTLM class.

Sarah Bovy will make her first ELMS appearance with Iron Lynx, teaming up with Rahel Frey and Michelle Gatting who have raced alongside Manuela Gostner in the ELMS continuously since the start of 2019.

Bovy also swapped in for Gostner for the two most recent WEC rounds at Monza and Le Mans.

Gostner is still taking part in the Michelin Le Mans Cup support race at Spa, driving of two Iron Lynx Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020s that form the bulk of a three-car entry in addition to 26 LMP3 cars

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365, covering the FIA World Endurance Championship, GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, among other series.

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