European Le Mans Series

Team Endurance Challenge ready for European Le Mans Series Assault

2 Mins read

Team Endurance Challenge prepared for the upcoming European Le Mans Series with two positive test days at Paul Ricard.

Using the “arrive and drive” concept from ORECA, proposing an all-inclusive package to run in ELMS, twenty-five drivers tested the ORECA-FLM 09 over two days for Team Endurance Challenge, all under the watchful eye of team mentor Nicolas Minassian.

“These were very positive tests” explained Minassian, “The cars are directly run by ORECA so I wasn’t surprised by the excellent level of preparation. Several drivers were present and I must say that I was impressed by the overall level, both from the younger drivers coming from single-seaters and also from gentlemen drivers who were discovering this type of car. Everyone got out of the driver’s seat with a large smile on their faces, and to me that’s an important point.

“I took time to follow each driver, so that I could determine their progress. They were all attentive and to see them improve lap after lap was a real satisfaction. I very much enjoyed the experience and I’m certain this will be the case during the rest of the season where I will be following Team Endurance Challenge attentively.”

The “arrive and drive” package allows drivers from any series participate in five rounds of the ELMS, competing in the LMPC class, and with Team Endurance Challenge being composed entirely of ORECA team members, there is a wealth of experience to draw from as they step onto the endurance racing ladder.

The system has proven itself over the past year, with Mathias Beche becoming the ELMS champion, while Dominik Kraihamer and Ricardo Gonzalez competed in every round of the World Endurance Championship.

One of the twenty-five drivers was Margot Laffite, a regular competitor in the Megane Trophy, with no previous experience of a Le Mans Prototype. What a sensation! This car, it’s the purest form of driving that I’ve ever felt.” said Laffite. “Honestly, I didn’t think that prototypes were right for me. And then…this was just perfect! It’s both extraordinary in terms of sensations, but also completely accessible. Until recently, I never thought this possible.

“It’s a fantastic school with a car that’s easy to come to grips with. What’s most impressive to me is the downforce. You can brake late and accelerate early….I only have one desire : get back behind the wheel! I think this is a very good program because it’s good for both young drivers and gentlemen drivers.”

Team Endurance Challenge will announce the first of its drivers for the European Le Mans Series LMPC class in the coming days.

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Based in Mid-Wales, James joined TCF at the start of the 2013 season, covering a range of disciplines, predominantly Motorcycle Road Racing and NASCAR. Follow him on Twitter @JCCharman
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