LMP1 non-hybrids could face a freeze in aero development through the 24 Hours of Le Mans, as part of the FIA and ACO’s Equivalence of Technology process for the 2018-19 World Endurance Championship season.
Sportscar365 has learned that measures may be put into place to limit evolutions in aero kits, in order to prevent any unforeseen performance changes in the twice-around-the-clock enduro.
The limitation would be through Le Mans only, with open aero development resuming following the race and through the majority of the ‘Super Season’.
Unlike LMP1 hybrid rules, which are limited to only two aero kits per season, non-hybrid regulations currently have no restrictions on developments, although are required to submit modifications/evolutions for approval at least 15 days prior to each event.
ACO Sporting Director Vincent Beaumesnil wouldn’t outright confirm the changes when asked by Sportscar365, although indicated the situation will be clarified in the release of the EoT for next month’s season-opening Six Hours of Spa.
“There are times where you can do it and times when you cannot do it,” Beaumesnil told Sportscar365. “The cars are homologated. There is an EoT process taking into consideration all these parameters.
“We had an informational meeting with teams on Thursday [at Paul Ricard] to explain several things.
“You cannot say [non-hybrids will be limited to] two aero kits like hybrid; that’s not the case… I don’t want to comment more than this at the moment.
“We will give more information on this when we publish the final [EoT] document.”
It’s unclear if the limitation would force all privateer teams to run its low-downforce aero package at Spa.
SMP Racing ran both of its BR Engineering BR1 AERs in low-downforce trim in last weekend’s Prologue at Paul Ricard, with DragonSpeed starting the pre-season test in high-downforce spec before sampling the Le Mans aero kit on the second day.
CEFC TRSM Racing, ByKolles and Rebellion Racing, meanwhile, all tested with low-downforce packages, with the ORECA-built Rebellion R13 Gibson not yet having rolled out its high-downforce aero kit.
LMP1 hybrid outfit Toyota Gazoo Racing, meanwhile, has declared it will run both of its Toyota TS050 Hybrids in Le Mans-spec aero for the season-opener.
Unlike previous years, which allowed for only a single adjustment period post-Le Mans, it’s believed that the FIA has the authority to make multiple EoT changes throughout the season, including up to Le Mans.
Beaumesnil declined comment when asked about the EoT procedure but said the document for Spa will be released “very soon.”