After debuting in the LMP1 both the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) and at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2012 JRM’s endurance sportscar team looks likely to spend 2013 on the sidelines.
The Surrey based team, 2011 champions in the FIA GT1 World Championship, had already confirmed they would not be returning to the WEC for a second season, but on the eve of the announcement of the entry list for this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans the team have announced they have withdrawn their entry for the event.
“It’s a difficult time, I think, particularly for P1 because of the expenses in doing it,” team principal James Rumsey is quoted on SPEED.com. “It’s really a tough category to try and be a privateer team in. Rebellion obviously have it tied up very well and I’m sure they’ll do a great job again this year and Strakka are no doubt financially secure but I think the other teams are probably in a similar situation to us. Nobody wants to go there just to be there. They want to compete for wins.”
The team, with drivers David Brabham, Peter Dumbreck and Karun Chandhok, finished third in the LMP1 teams’ championship of the WEC, taking sixth overall at Le Mans and a pair of LMP1 teams’ podium results at Fuji and Shanghai to close out the season with the HPD ARX-03a.
Only last weekend the team’s performance at the 24 Hours of Le Mans was honoured by the British Racing Mechanics Club.
In the absence of an LMP1 program JRM will focus on supporting customers of the Nissan GT-R GT3 the company helped develop ahead of the 2012 racing season.
The first and foremost thing is the customer support of the GT3 teams,” said Rumsey. “We need to help those guys and get them to where they want and need to be in order to fully demonstrate the potential of the GT-R as a viable GT3 customer package. We’ve been working with NISMO pretty hard over the last 12 months developing the upgrade. We’re keen to just bring new teams on board and expand the customer base.”