LMP1 outfit ByKolles Racing and two high-profile crews in the LMP2 class are the standouts on the ten-car reserve list for this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The table of backup entries, which will be sequentially added to the main field in the event of withdrawals, was confirmed as part of Friday’s entry announcement.
European Le Mans Series entrant Spirit of Race is the first reserve with its Ferrari 488 GTE Evo that has Duncan Cameron, Aaron Scott and Matt Griffin listed as drivers.
ByKolles Racing’s ENSO CLM P1/01 Gibson is the top prototype standby and becomes the first LMP1 reserve in eight years be on the list.
The last instance came in 2012, in the first season of the FIA World Endurance Championship, when Hope Racing’s hybrid-powered Oreca 01 appeared on the reserve list.
Despite being a WEC regular for six years, ByKolles elected not to take part in the full 2019-20 season to focus on the development of its proposed Hypercar project and was therefore not guaranteed a place at Le Mans.
However, the team had plans to run its LMP1 non-hybrid entry in the final two rounds of the current season at Spa and the Circuit de la Sarthe.
ByKolles director of operations Boris Bermes declined to comment on the team’s reserve status when contacted by Sportscar365.
The top LMP2 reserve is IDEC Sport, which already has one Oreca 07 Gibson on the main grid, while three other cars in the secondary prototype class are on standby.
These are High Class Racing’s Oreca that was set to feature Jan Magnussen; a DragonSpeed Oreca for Ben Hanley, Henrik Hedman and IndyCar front-runner Felix Rosenqvist, and a Ligier JS P217 Gibson for Inter Europol Competition and Nigel Moore.
All three teams already have one spot each on the main 62-vehicle entry list.
The only team to receive two race entries in the LMP2 class is United Autosports, which will run one of its ELMS Orecas in addition to its already-confirmed WEC car.
DragonSpeed team principal Elton Julian told Sportscar365 that it’s “always disappointing” when one of his cars doesn’t make the entry but admitted it was a “very competitive field of high-quality entries of varying commitments to ACO-run championships.”
“Let’s hope that with the integration between both championships, those full-time in the IMSA have equal consideration,” Julian added.
“We are very proud that our ELMS car has been granted an entry and look forward to representing our full-time ELMS team at the greatest sports car race in the world.”
In GTE, four cars from three different manufacturers are named as backups behind the Spirit of Race Ferrari.
The second-highest GTE reserve is Porsche squad Proton Competition, ahead of Ferrari team Iron Lynx Racing, Porsche outfit Team Project 1 and Aston Martin entrant D’Station Racing, which competes in Super GT.
Proton and Project 1 already have two cars on the Le Mans grid courtesy of their full-season WEC involvements, while Iron Lynx is already represented with one ELMS car.
24 HOURS OF LE MANS RESERVE LIST