Newblood by Morand Target Podium for Le Mans

by Nick Smith

Morand Racing, returning to the 24 Hours of Le Mans under the Newblood by Morand Racing banner, are targeting a podium finish in LMP2 after qualifying in the top ten for the class at Le Sarthe. Christian Klein qualified the #43 Morgan, one of two Morgans chassis in the field with Judd power, in eighth place.

The former Aston Martin Racing works driver was given the duty after racing in both the Aston Martin Racing AMR-One and Peugeot 908 HDi FAP. His Le Mans experience was also vital to the team in preparing the setup of the Morgan for the unique challenges of the Circuit de La Sarthe.

Klien will be joined in the #43 Morgan-Judd by Gary Hirsch and Romain Brandela.

Team owner Benoit Morand is optimistic about the Newblood by Morand Racing outfit’s chances of success in the LMP2 class. He said, “We had some problems during the Wednesday session. This really is a difficult track, and we always experience some glitches here from one year to another. For the two Thursday night sessions we made the decision to work in another direction and things got better. We could set this time thanks to Christian, he was particularly impressive in the Porsche corners. But we lack a little bit of speed in the Mulsanne Straight. Anyway, I am confident for the race. The last thing we have to do is to define a race strategy before the race start at 3 pm on Saturday, but our main goal is to remain in the top positions as long as possible.”

Klien added, “We are very happy with the car and made great improvements with the set-up so we could set better time laps. I had one qualifying run on soft tyres. It was quite good, I took the maximum out of the car. I really was pushing to the limit on the Porsche corners. It looks promising for the race. At night time we had some runs with the medium tyres, and it was a nice drive. I think we are in the front pack of the LM P2 class. This is a good start for the race and we will see where we will go from here.”

In addition to the 24 Hours of Le Mans the team are also contesting a full season in the European Le Mans Series.

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