RGR Sport 2017 absence down to homeland economic downturn

by Paul Hensby

One of the more noticeable absentees from the entry list for the 2017 FIA World Endurance Championship was that of the RGR Sport by Morand outfit, a team that took LMP2 class two victories in 2016.

The trio of team owner Ricardo Rodriguez, Bruno Senna and Filipe Albuquerque also finished second in the final standings with their Ligier JS P2 Nissan last season, but the financial downturn in Rodriguez’s homeland of Mexico and his increased business commitments meant the team were unable to put together a full-season plan for 2017.

“Looking at the worldwide economics, things are pretty tough, especially in Mexico,” said Gonzalez to Sportscar365. “For myself, it’s also a very important year for my personal businesses.

“So the combination of those two factors, it was important for me to take a sabbatical and spend more time on my own projects. Obviously this is not the way we wanted to do this year but we’re definitely looking forward to what we can do in the future.”

The team have not ruled out making sporadic appearances this season, with Team Manager Toni Calderon not ruling that or races in other championships this year.

“I wouldn’t rule out doing something this year in another series, or a couple of one-offs in WEC,” added Calderon. “And you never know, there may be some kind of crazy opportunities outside of sports car racing we’ll look at.

“A year ago, nobody knew what RGR Sport was, literally the name didn’t even exist… To suddenly have such a successful year and create such a big brand in motorsports… is something we’ve been very proud of and want to continue.”

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