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Road to Le Mans

Martin Brundle: “It Just Seemed Like a Golden Opportunity”

Martin Brundle returns to Le Mans with United Autosports in Road to Le Mans…

Photo: United Autosports

Photo: United Autosports

United Autosports has made a name for itself over the last few months as one of the leading LMP3 teams, and it looks to be bringing one of the strongest lineups for the Road to Le Mans race later this month.

While Alex Brundle, winner of both European Le Mans Series rounds so far this season, will not take the wheel of the Ligier JS P3 Nissan at Circuit de la Sarthe on the morning before the 24 Hours, his father will.

Martin Brundle, who has 158 Formula 1 starts and the overall 1990 Le Mans victory to his name, will pair with ELMS full-season driver Christian England in one of the team’s two Ligiers.

I know the car because Alex is racing it and I know Zak [Brown] and Richard [Dean] very well,” he told Sportscar365.

“When I realized Alex wasn’t eligible for it, it just seemed like a great idea for me to drive it, just for the pleasure of it really.

“To get a prototype on the full circuit, you’ve usually got to be doing the main race, which I haven’t got time to do at the moment, or the opportunity for that matter.

“It just seemed like a golden opportunity to drive a great little car on a track that I love. I’m really impressed with the whole team.”

Brundle’s last attempt at the main race was in 2012, with Greaves Motorsport and alongside his son and Lucas Ordonez. He said he would be open the opportunity to return to the race in the future, if the opportunity arises.

“I wouldn’t mind, but I’ll be 57 years old so I’m not exactly on the top of [the list],” he said.

“It would have to be in an LMP2, it’s not going to be in a P1, obviously. I do fancy doing it again.

“Now I’m over 55, I’m a Silver, so that opens up opportunities. It depends on time and budget, and my Sky [television] demands.”

There has been a great deal of controversy regarding the clash between Le Mans and the inaugural Formula 1 European Grand Prix in Baku.

As a prominent member of the F1 paddock, and Sky Sports F1’s presenting team in the U.K., Brundle will be forced to miss the Formula 1 action for the Road to Le Mans race, although he argues that this isn’t too much of an issue for the races as a whole.

I don’t think it’s a big deal, really,” he said. “Baku will attract the Formula 1 audience that it would get, and I don’t imagine the Le Mans campsites are going to be missing anybody either.

“The calendar clashes now, with so many great sports around the world, are inevitable.

I’ve been to over 500 Grands Prix, so I can miss one and it’s not going to ruin my life. It’s not a problem.

“I love driving and I didn’t want to miss the opportunity to go and have some pleasure around Le Mans.”

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

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