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COTA FIA WEC Pre-Race Notebook

John Dagys’ pre-race notebook for FIA WEC Six Hours of COTA…

Photo: John Dagys

Photo: John Dagys

***The FIA WEC reaches a milestone, as today’s Six Hours of Circuit of The Americas marks the 20th series event. It’s quite appropriate, as the globe-trotting championship kicked off in the U.S. with the Twelve Hours of Sebring 2012.

***The first steps towards the creation of the 2017 global prototype regulations will begin next week as the FIA and ACO hold the first constructor’s meeting in Paris on Tuesday. The proposed next-gen platform is set to replace the existing LMP2 and DP cars currently competing in championships worldwide.

***The FIA has been in talks with LMP1 manufacturers for possible cost reduction methods, which could include limitations on testing and tires used on a race weekend. An initial meeting was held recently in  although no final decisions have been made for the 2015 season.

***Toyota’s Pascal Vasselon revealed that a third Toyota TS040 Hybrid entry for next year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans is currently unlikely due to budget issues. He said it’s not an option to divert budget for the development of the car. “No one is interested by three slow cars,” he said.

***Vasselon said Toyota’s 2015 driver situation is “under control” despite Nissan believed to have approached a number of their drivers. “I think every single top level driver has gotten a fan static offer from Nissan. As we have some of the very top drivers of the category, of course they’ve been approached.”

***Engine Development Ltd has continued work on its Judd LMP1 engine, which could be seen in the championship next year. According to general manager Stan Hall, the company is in discussions with a few potential customers for the 4.4-liter normally aspirated V8. “A bit like Toyota, we believe a larger N/A engine is the way to go rather than a small turbocharged. We have to think of the privateers and the costs,” he said.

***On the LMP2 engine front, Hall is targeting additional customers to join the newly announced Krohn Racing Ligier JS P2 with Judd power in the U.S. next year. “I’m hopeful we can pick up some other customers but it’s early days. Obviously having won the last race in Europe, there’s a bit of interest being generated there too.”

***There are a total of 67 Porsches racing at COTA this weekend, between the FIA WEC, TUDOR Championship, Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge and Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge series, with more than 200 staff on-site to support the massive effort.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John


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