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European Le Mans Series

Larbre Planning Partial Season FIA WEC Program

Larbre Competition expands efforts to ELMS and partial season FIA WEC…

Photo: DPPI

Photo: DPPI

Larbre Competition is set to add a partial season FIA World Endurance Championship effort to its already confirmed European Le Mans Series program in LMP2.

The French squad revealed Thursday that it has laid out plans to enter the final five FIA WEC rounds of the season, beginning with the Six Hours of Circuit of The Americas in September, with Keiko Ihara as one of its drivers.

Ihara joined OAK Racing and Onroak Automotive boss Jacques Nicolet and fellow Frenchman Olivier Pla behind the wheel of the team’s Morgan-Judd at this week’s ELMS pre-season test at Paul Ricard.

The Japanese driver, who teamed with Nicolet in one of OAK’s Morgan-Nissans in the FIA WEC last year, is also slated to compete in the early season ELMS races with Larbre, as well as the 24 Hours of Le Mans, pending entry.

Larbre currently sits as the first prototype reserve entry, a decision which team owner Jack Leconte said nearly canceled its entire LMP2 program.

“After the decision was made public we were set to pull the plug on our endurance program, but Jacques [Nicolet] – whom we are delighted to see race our No. 50 car – breathed new life into the project, which enabled us to bounce back,” Leconte said.

“We are now determined to extract the full potential of our Morgan LMP2 and the official ELMS test session could not have come at a better time.

“For our first season in prototype racing our main goal will be to gain as much mileage as possible in an attempt to improve our knowledge of the car and its reliability. Then, we will be ready for a full WEC return in 2015.”

Nicolet is set to pilot the No. 50 entry in the entire ELMS season, with the team’s full lineup for both series yet to be announced.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John

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