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LMP2 Champion Zlobin Set for Switch to GTE-Am in 2015

LMP2 champ Sergey Zlobin to drive SMP Ferrari in 2015…

Photo: SMP Racing

Photo: SMP Racing

Newly crowned LMP2 world champion Sergey Zlobin is set for a switch to the GTE-Am ranks next year as part of an expanded effort for SMP Racing in the FIA World Endurance Championship.

Zlobin confirmed to Sportscar365 the Russian squad’s plans to field a Ferrari F458 Italia GT in addition to its two new LMP2 class BR01 prototypes.

The Bronze-rated Zlobin, who also claimed the European Le Mans Series GTE title this year with SMP, will make way for a to-be-determined Silver-rated driver to join Nic Minassian and Maurizio Mediani in the lead BR01.

His 2014 LMP2 world title was clinched in last weekend’s season-ending Six Hours of Sao Paulo, where Zlobin, Minassian and Mediani recorded a runner-up finish following an early retirement for the championship-leading G-Drive Racing Ligier JS P2 Nissan.

“It’s a good day for me,” Zlobin told Sportscar365 post-race. “I have good teammates with Nicolas and Maurizo and the best engineer. It’s teamwork, it’s not only just me. I think it’s good luck for me but good for the whole team.

“We had no chance in fighting with the Ligier because the car is in a different category. But before the race I told my engineer, ‘Luigi, we will win this championship.'”

Zlobin, who also serves as the team’s sporting director, capped off a remarkable year for SMP that saw a total of three class championships between the ELMS and FIA WEC alone.

On-track testing for its new LMP2 car is scheduled to begin early next year.

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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