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Lamborghini’s “Incredible” Le Mans Helps Set SC63 Direction

Lamborghini Iron Lynx’s Emmanuel Esnault looks back on positive Le Mans debut for SC63…

Photo: Julien Delfosse/DPPI

Lamborghini says its focus for the remainder of the year will be on deciding how best to implement upgrades on the SC63 after a positive showing in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The Italian manufacturer secured its best FIA World Endurance Championship finish so far in the blue riband race, with the No. 63 entry shared by Mirko Bortolotti, Daniil Kvyat and Edoardo Mortara finishing 10th, two laps down on the winning car.

Andrea Caldarelli, Matteo Cairoli and Romain Grosjean came home 13th at the finish in the sister No. 19 entry, with both cars enjoying largely clean runs at La Sarthe.

Lamborghini Iron Lynx racing director Emmanuel Esnault admitted that Lamborghini had taken a “conservative” approach to Le Mans knowing that it didn’t have the raw pace to rival the benchmark manufacturers in Hypercar.

But he said getting both SC63s to the finish was valuable to the team as it evaluates how best to get the car closer to the ultimate pace.

“It was a positive outcome, definitely,” Esnault told Sportscar365. “We still have a lack of pace, so we need to work on the pure performance of the car. 

“We have clearly identified the points we need to work on. We know the agenda for the end of this year. That’s why it was important for us to secure a finish for both cars. 

“We were very conservative in terms of how we approached the race weekend. It’s obvious that we were not in a position to fight on-track against Porsche, Ferrari, Cadillac.

“It’s a new car, we are building the team, we are still improving race-by-race in terms of the way we operate and approach the car. It’s part of the learning process. 

“We know where we are, and where the others are, so we have to be humble and approach it in the right way.”

Reflecting on Lamborghini’s performance, ex-Formula 1 driver Kvyat said the Iron Lynx-run operation should “celebrate” its achievement on the SC63’s debut, and said he was encouraged by how the team made the most of its package.

“I think it’s incredible, to be honest,” Kvyat told Sportscar365. “It’s very cool that we made it to the checkered flag; that’s a huge confidence boost for the whole team. 

“This year in general has been really tough, so we need to celebrate this as a token of our hard work. But there is still a lot of hard work ahead of us. 

“We have a strong lineup and a strong team, we got a lot of strategy calls right and no big mistakes that cost us time. 

“So if we improve the areas we know we need to improve, we can seriously fight to win this thing one day. We need to invest now in the future.”

Asked specifically about where Lamborghini is considering the use of the so-called EVO jokers to improve the SC63’s performance in the coming months, Esnault clarified these would be “improvements” rather than any major conceptual changes.

He said the introduction of “lightweight parts” would be considered amid suggestions that the SC63 remains slightly overweight.

“We need to discuss internally because there are many things,” he said. “We were really focused on that Le Mans race, to prove to everyone we are able to do the job. 

“Now we have done it and we have a better knowledge of what we can do to the car to make it quicker. This will be our job in the second half of the season.”

Jamie Klein is Sportscar365's Asian editor. Japan-based Klein, who previously worked for Motorsport Network on the Motorsport.cоm and Autosport titles, covers the FIA World Endurance Championship and SUPER GT, among other series.

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