Just two weeks before the third round of the 2018/19 FIA World Endurance Championship, the CEFC TRSM / Manor Racing Ginetta-running duo have pulled out of the race after a late change in engine suppliers.
After engine provider Mecachrome informed the team that they were unable to make changes to their engines to find the team more pace, Ginetta went looking for a new engine supplier. The AER P60B Twin Turbo V6 engine was found and Ginetta moved to bring in the new engine ready for this month’s race.
However, as this is classed as a model change, the car had to be ready a month before the event for the FIA Endurance Committee to conduct a review and declare dispensation so that the new car can race. As Ginetta missed this deadline, the cars are not allowed, due to FIA WEC regulations, to take to the race track in a fortnight’s time.
Although it was great to see both cars competing throughout the week of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, suggesting that the financial issues that prevented them from taking part in the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps were behind them, it was made clear there is still a lot for Ginetta / Manor to do. Only one of their cars made it to the Le Mans chequered flag, an electrical issues taking out the #6, and that car finished 105 laps off the leaders at the back of the classified grid.
Ginetta strove to use the two month break between Le Mans and the 6 Hours of Silverstone to make the needed changes to their car so that they could be seen as a competitive entry in the LMP1 field. With Mecachrome telling the team they could not do what was required to bring more pace to the car, Ginetta’s hand was forced to find a new engine supplier.
The official statement from Ginetta said: “Ginetta is hugely disappointed by this outcome, as the manufacturer had ensured everything was in place to deliver a competitive car ready for the manufacturer and team’s ‘home’ race. This included a change of engine in order to provide the additional power that was missing on the G60-LT-P1’s competitive debut at Le Mans.
“A new manufacturer had been sourced, with the Ginetta Technical Team electing to switch to a AER P60B twin turbo V6 engine when existing engine supplier, Mecachrome, confirmed they could not make the necessary changes.
“Sadly, despite Ginetta’s best efforts, it now appears that the cars will not race.”
This will be the second race, out of three, that Manor has not competed in this season, showing that this has not been the best start to the season for the team. We can only hope that Ginetta and CEFC Manor can work together to get things sorted before the next race at Fuji in October.