motor sports | Endurance | Peugeot will have to race at least at Sebring or Spa before doing Le Mans


As we told you during the presentation of the official WEC line-up for the 2022 season, Peugeot’s presence in the Hypercar category is indeed confirmed, but the French firm, still in the process of testing its new prototype, does not yet know when she will be able to field her new 9X8 for the first time. The month of July and the 6 Hours of Monza were mentioned.

In any case, according to the director of the WEC Frederic Lequien, there is no question of seeing Peugeot land directly for the 24 Hours of Le Mans event, the race of which will take place on June 11 and 12. Indeed, they will have to compete in at least one other race on the calendar beforehand, as a matter of sporting fairness.

Before the Sarthe event, the WEC will go to Sebring in mid-March to contest the opening round and then go to Spa in early May.

« They have to race at least once before, so we hope to see them at Spa, » said Lequien. « I don’t work for Peugeot, so it would be better to ask them if they think they are ready for Sebring. »

« We need to see this car before Le Mans. It’s a matter of principle and we can collect data. It’s about ensuring sporting fairness, not a commercial issue. »

If Peugeot will be there in the long term, another team has been refused entry into the Hypercar category: it is ByKolles.

No details were given as to this choice, Lequien only saying that the team had obviously not fulfilled all the criteria required to line up on the starting grid at Sebring and will therefore not be able to play any rounds of the season. 2022.

Porsche’s LMDh prototype hits the track

For its part, Porsche has unveiled a video of its new prototype (photo) which will take part in the LMDh category in 2023, all with a camouflage livery which is reminiscent of what Red Bull did during winter testing few years ago.

On the Weissach circuit, the German brand was able to complete the first shakedown of its car. This should have initially taken place in December but was finally postponed to this month.

“We are very proud of this stage in the development of our new car which will enter the WEC in 2023,” said Porsche Vice President Thomas Laudenbach. « Thank you to everyone who was involved in Weissach and then in the Porsche team. »

Factory driver Fred Makowiecki was at the wheel today, and he estimated « that it was a very positive test. We were able to do laps and discover the car as expected. We have a good starting point to move forward. »

Kubica and Bourdais add a WEC program

Let’s also mention Robert Kubica who, alongside his role as third driver at Alfa Romeo, will compete in the world endurance championship this season in the LMP2 category. It is at Prema, whose personal sponsor of the Pole Orlen also appears in the name of the team, that the winner of the Grand Prix du Canada 2008 will drive. He will be associated with Louis Delatraz and a newcomer to the category, the Italian Lorenzo Colombo who passed through F3.

Another driver who has raced in Formula 1 will be engaged for the first time full-time in the WEC, since Sébastien Bourdais will also drive in the LMP2 category within the British team Vector, which is making its debut in the championship. The winner of the 2016 24 Hours of Le Mans in the LMGTEpro class at the wheel of the Ford GT will be associated with Nico Muller, Audi factory driver, and we are still waiting to know the third driver who will complete the crew.



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