Inter Europol Competition

Image courtesy of Inter Europol Competition


Inter Europol Competition are based in Poland, the team started in in 2010 racing in single seater series, in 2016 / 2017 they moved direction and entered a single LMP3 car, in 2017 / 2018 they went on to enter 2 LMP3’s and 2 LMP2 cars with some success finishing runners up, so for 2019 they entered the highly competitive Asian Le Mans Series (ALMS) they did this with one aim to get an entry into the 24 Hours of Le Man for the same year 2019 which they did, finishing 16th in the championship but more significant they won 2 races and came 2nd twice in the LMP2 class plus they also became champions in the LMP3 class, in 2020 they would return to both championships with the new Ligier and again enter the 24 Hours of Le Man for that year finishing 17th.

For 2021 the team went further a field and entered the American endurance series IMSA racing at Petit Le Man and the 12 hours of Sebring with different machinery a Oreca LMP2, Inter Europol are the first polish team to compete in the World Endurance Championship (WEC) last time out at the 6 hours of Monza they finished 4th there best result thus far, they return to the Circuit de la Sarthe hoping to better last years result, the team’s driver line up consists of 2 time Daytona 24 hours winner Renger van der Zande from the Netherlands, British driver and LMP2 regular Alex Brundle and Polish driver Jakub Smiechowski.

 

Stats thus far :-

144 Races in LMP2 & LMP3

50 podiums including 14 x Wins – 21 x 2nd’s – 15 x 3rd’s

Runners-Up in ELMS 2018, 2019, 2020

Champions ALMS 2018, 2019

Team WRT make it 2 from 2 at the Red Bull Ring

Image courtesy of ELMS


Belgium squad WRT with Louis Delatraz, Yifei Ye and ex F1 driver Robert Kubica in car 41 dominated at the Red Bull Ring and made it 2 from 2 following there win in Barcelona in April.

41 cars from 3 different classes took the start at the sunny & dry Austrian circuit, all cars got away well but that wouldn’t last long, has on lap 2 a huge accident involving 3 cars at turn 3, car 22 spun and took out car’s 3 & 18 this would be the end of there race and bring the first safety car period while the marshal’s cleared the debris, after a 20 minute delay in proceedings, it was back to green racing with Car 26 (G-Drive Racing) leading in LMP2, car 4 (DKR Engineering) and car 88 the Ferrari (AF Corse) . It was nose to tail in all classes with the lead changes plus with the pit stop cycle it made for a very interesting race, at the halfway point car 26 (G-Drive Racing) still leading while in LMP3 car 07 (Neilsen Racing) took over at the front and in LMGTE (Iron Lynx) Ferrari Car 80 would now lead in class.

Image courtesy of ELMS

The 2nd part of the 4 hour race would change dramatically with the heavens opening and heavy rain starting to fall, most teams opted to stay out on slicks this would turn out to be the wrong option has cars spun on different parts of the circuit, it was now clear, wets would be the best tyre to use, so there was a sudden rush to the pits, has the weather got worse and the rain heavier track conditions deteriorated with cars spinning off, so race director (Eduardo Freitas) had no option but to bring out the 2nd safety car period of the race, the rain was still heavy and cars where still spinning even behind the safety car, has the race went into its final hour and still under caution, the lead had changed in LMP2 with car 41 (Team WRT) car 02 (United Autosports) in LMP3 and car 80 (Iron Lynx) still leading in LMGTE.

With just 55 minutes remaining the race finally went back to green and the rain slowly stopping, the track was still damp / tricky the battle was on for the overall lead in LMP2, after 3 and half hours of racing and 134 laps covered, car 26 (G-Drive Racing) and (Team WRT) car 41 are neck and neck, the pressure pays off with 15 minutes to go, the (G-Drive Racing) car 26 makes a tiny error at turn , this allows car 41 (Team WRT) a slight advantage, he snicks through to lead the race and take the chequered flag, in LMP3 (Cool Racing) car 19 takes the its first win of 2021 while in LMGTE Ferrari took the top 3 spots with car 88 (AF Corse) taking the class win.

 

Official Result

LMP2 Class

1st  Car 41 – Team WRT

2nd Car 26 – G-Drive Racing

3rd Car 22 – United Autosports

 

LMP3 Class

1st Car  19 – Cool Racing

2nd Car 11 – Eurointernational

3rd Car 08 – Graff Racing

Image courtesy of ELMS

LMGTE Class

1st Car 88 – AF Corse

2nd Car 55 – Spirit of Race

3rd Car 80 – Iron Lynx

Pit Crew’s Endurance Racing Explained

Image courtesy of FIA WEC

Endurance racing stands out from any other forms of motorsport, in that it tests not only the skill and stamina of the driver, but the reliability of the car, whether its at 24 hours of Le Man’s, 24 hours of Daytona or 12 hours of Sebring.

Car manufacturers boast and take pride in their cars winning but its not just open to the elite manufacturers (Ferrari, Toyota, Porsche, Aston Martin, Peugeot) private and independent teams (privateers) can take part, and there are several classes, for example WEC (World Endurance Championship) has 4 classes Hypercar (New for 2021 was LMP1), LMP2 and LMPGTE with 2 classes PRO & AM.

Image courtesy of HYPERCAR

 

HYPERCAR (Formally known as LMP1)

Le Man’s prototypes, these are built to a set specification set out by the governing body’s (FIA, ACO) with a minimum weight of 1030kg and have a total combined output of 500KW (Engine + Hybrid system) they must be based around road going vehicles and BOP (Balance of Performance) is a level playing field, plus for WEC run on Michelin tyres.

LMP2

LMP2 cars are smaller, lighter and less powerful but they do have potentially better power to weight ratio, minimum weight allowed is 930KG, fuel tank capacity of 75 litres, with a 4.2 litre V8 engine with 500BHP.

Image courtesy of LMGTE Pro

LMGTE (PRO + AM)

Also, on the grid are LMGTE car’s these are race cars derived from street cars, they have a fuel tank capacity of 90 litres with either a normal aspirated engine 5500CC MAX or a turbo/supercharged engine 4000CC MAX plus a minimum weight of 1245KG. There are 2 classes in LMGTE (PRO) which will have drivers especially professional / factory drivers (AM) these are amateur drivers or gentleman drivers.

Within each race there is 4 races, with all classes competing for prizes, whether its for overhaul victory or winner of each class, (The podium will have 4 ceremonies).

 

Le Man’s is the most famous and prestigious of all the endurance races and has been held since 1923 at the 8.5-mile road circuit at Le Sarthe, Le Man’s, France, Endurance racing has several racing deries throughout the world

FIA-WEC     World Endurance Championship

IMSA           International Motor Sport Association (Based in the USA)

ELMS           European Le Man’s Series

Asian Le Man’s Series (Based in China, Japan)

IGTC            Intercontinental GT Challenge (GT Cars Only)

Plus, there are stand-alone endurance events such has SPA 24 hours, 24 hours of the Nurburgring but these are mainly for GT car’s but still have different classes (GT3, GT4) and based on different specifications & regulations.

 

Manufacturers use these races / events to test certain types of parts / engineering which is then put in their road cars which we buy today.

Team’s can use 2 to 4 drivers depending on the length of the race, plus depending on the event / series regulations, they must only drive for a certain length of time or stint, so a driver can double or triple stint has long the teams go by he set regulations for that series / championship. 

Endurance racing his ever more popular and fans can enjoy and interact with teams and drivers in the paddock, in 2019 a staggering 252,500 fans attended the Circuit De La Sarthe for the Le Man’s 24 hours.

Terminology

LMP —– Le Man’s Prototype

LMDh — Le Man’s (ACO) Daytona (IMSA) hypercar / hybrid car

LMGT — Le Man’s Grand Tourer

BOP —– Balance of Performance

FIA —— Federation Internationale de l’Automobile

ACO —- Automobile Club de I’Quest

Hypercar – FIA ACO specialist prototype / car based on road gong vehicles

Prologue – Testing / Media Day for WEC

Porsche Dominates at the Nürburgring

Image courtesy of N24

 

Porsche’s great form continued at the 6-hour qualifying race for the main event the 24 hours of the Nürburgring in June.

 

The Porsche 911 GT3 of Frikadelli Racing driven by Frederic Makowiecki, Patrick Pilet, Dennis Olsen & Maxime Martin brought Car 31 home to victory, with the Manthey Porsche 911 of Matteo Cairoli, Michael Christensen & Lars Kern in 2ndbut this would be short lived has they were handed a time penalty for failing to obey flag signals putting them back to 5th, this would promote the sister Frikadelli Racing Car 30 to 2nd spot with Nick Tandy, Earl Bamber, Matt Campbell & Mathieu Jaminet making it a one – two for the team, with the Pole sitting car 11 of Phoenix Racing Audi R8LMS GT3 EVO with ex Aston Martin factory driver of Nicki Thiim along with Michele Beretta, Frank Stippler & Vincent Kolb for the final spot on the podium P3.

Image courtesy of Porsche

On a warm Sunday afternoon in the forest of the Rhineland 85 cars took the start, the winning Porsche started on the grid from 5th but by the time they started on lap 2 they would be 2nd, the lead would change hands a number of times with no Safety Cars and only of local yellows covered by Code 60s, during the race and at Pit cycles, just after the 2nd hour the leading car Audi Car 11 with Stippler onboard made a very rare mistake after battling with the Porsche Car 31 of Pilet and ran off into the gravel trap just after the grand prix loop, this would hand the lead to Car 31 Porsche leaving the Audi back in 7th, the 2 Porsche team’s of Frikadelli and Manthey would put pressure on each other and this would how it would be as they went into the last hour, Cairoli car 911leading Olsen car 31.

Image courtesy of Porsche

With just 30 minutes remaining all the top cars pitted but car 31 would pit just that bit later, this would be the decisive move of the race and move the momentum to the Frikadelli Porsche Team. They would take the flag 15 seconds ahead of the 2nd place Manthey Porsche, with the 2nd Frikadelli Porsche a minute behind and 3rd.

Image courtesy of Porsche

 

Result

1st Car 31  Porsche –  Frikadelli Racing

2nd Car 30 Porsche –  Frikadelli Racing

3rd Car 11 Audi        –  Phoenix Racing

4th Car 07 Mercedes  Team Getspeed

5th Car 911 Porsche – Manthey Racing

ADAC Total 24 Hours – Nürburgring Qualifying Race

Images courtesy of ADAC

A Total of 31 GT3 Cars in an 85-car entry will start this weekends Nürburgring 24 hours qualifying race, last years event was cancelled due to the covid pandemic, this weekend’s race will once again run behind closed doors with no spectators’ it will be a 6-hour dress rehearsal & set the grid for the main event which will take place on the weekend of the 5th to 6th June, 6 manufacturers will enter 31 cars in the GT3 (SP9) class (Audi 3 Cars, Ferrari 3 Cars, Lamborghini 2 Cars, Mercedes-AMG 8 Cars, Porsche 8 Cars and last years winners BMW 7 Cars).

Image courtesy of ADAC

The remainder of the grid will be a mix of GT4 cars plus 2 cars which are entered in the SP-X clas a Mercedes-AMG GT3 EVO & the other entry is the Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus SC9 004C which has been also entered in this year FIA WEC championship has a Hypercar.

Image courtesy of ADAC

Over 240 drivers will take to the full 15.8 mile circuit nicknamed the Green Hell, which has been held since 1970 in the Rhineland’s of Germany.