The top category in endurance racing
New rules for the top tier Hypercar category were released to day by the WEC and are summarised below.
While governed by one rulebook, manufacturers may choose between:
What is the aim of these regulations? To create a top class with a level playing field and limited impact of the budget on the performance to encourage teams to run two cars in a full FIA WEC season over a five-year campaign.
Performance will be less reliant on the amount invested. High budget expenditure will not imply performance advantage.
Chassis based on original cars will be subject to similar safety criteria as the prototypes. For prototypes, specifications and safety criteria remain unchanged compared to the current LMP1 class. Homologation is valid for five years.
An energy restitution threshold for the front wheels has been defined, to contain the advantages of a front-wheel hybrid system (4 wheel drive) and ensure that 2-wheel drive cars can compete.
In order to level playing field between the two types of cars, prototypes and road car going hypercars, the principles of balancing performance are as follows:
Two teams commit to the new Hypercar category for WEC
Toyota Gazoo Racing
Toyota Gazoo Racing will continue its participation in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) beyond 2020 following the confirmation of new technical regulations.
The team already announced its participation in the 2019-2020 season, the final campaign with the current-specification LMP1 regulations, and today confirms it will be present on the grid when the new generation of top-class endurance race cars make their WEC debut in autumn 2020.
Earlier today in Le Mans, the Automobile Club de l’Ouest revealed final details of the new technical regulations following detailed discussions with several stakeholders, including newly-crowned World Champions Toyota Gazoo Racing.
As a result, Toyota Gazoo Racing is delighted to confirm it will participate in the 2020-2021 season with a hybrid-powered prototype based on the GR Super Sport road car. Both road and race car are undergoing design and intensive development at the company’s technical centres in Toyota City, Higashi-Fuji and Cologne.
Toyota Gazoo Racing enthusiastically welcomes the future challenge of competing against other sportscar manufacturers in the new top category of WEC and the Le Mans 24 Hours and is confident in an exciting, successful period for endurance racing.
Track testing of the new race car, the name of which will be revealed at a later date, will begin next year prior to the start of the 2020-2021 season while further details of the GR Super Sport road car will be issued by Toyota Gazoo Racing in due course.
ASTON MARTIN VALKYRIE HYPERCAR TO FIGHT FOR OVERALL VICTORY AT LE MANS
Following the announcement of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest’s decision to introduce hypercars to the top category of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC), Aston Martin will field a minimum of two works Aston Martin Valkyrie hypercars, specially-developed for the 2020/21 FIA WEC season, including the 2021 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Britain has enjoyed a long romance with the Circuit de la Sarthe, indeed in 2021 it will be 100 years since an Aston Martin first raced there. But it’s more than a quarter of a century since a British-built derivative of a road car claimed top honours at Le Mans, and invoking the pioneering spirit of the company’s founder Lionel Martin and the ingenuity of some of Britain’s best engineering minds, Aston Martin is now set to carry that mantle into the next decade with a bold attempt to win Le Mans and the world championship.
Aston Martin Valkyrie, the world’s most extreme road car and platform for this future challenger, is the combined vision of Aston Martin Red Bull Racing’s Chief Technical Officer Adrian Newey, Aston Martin EVP and Chief Creative Officer Marek Reichman and Aston Martin VP and Chief Special Operations Officer David King. It was created as a result of a technical collaboration between Aston Martin, Red Bull Advanced Technologies and project partner AF Racing.
In line with WEC’s newly confirmed ‘hypercar’ regulations designed to allow race-prepared derivatives of the world’s fastest road cars to fight at the forefront of world sportscar racing, the Aston Martin Valkyrie race car will draw on all the radical pillars of the road car and its track-only AMR Pro variant.
The new car will feature a race-prepared version of its bespoke high-revving normally-aspirated 6.5-litre V12 engine. Placed within a lightweight carbon fibre structure, and featuring F1 inspired aerodynamic technology, it forms a fully competitive platform capable of challenging for outright race wins.
Aston Martin Vice President and Chief Special Operations Officer, David King said: “The FIA World Endurance Championship and the 24 Hours of Le Mans represent the ultimate challenge for the Aston Martin Valkyrie – the world’s most extreme hypercar. Designed and built with the purpose of pushing boundaries on the road, it’s natural to conclude that the next stage in its development would be to measure its capabilities on the track. I can think of no better way to do that than to compete in a world championship and the most prestigious and famous race of all.”
Aston Martin Lagonda President and Group CEO, Andy Palmer said: “We have always said that we would one day bring Aston Martin back to Le Mans with the intention of going for the outright win when the time was right – now is that time. David Brown came here in 1959, with a car and a team of drivers capable of winning. We intend to do the same in 2021. The Aston Martin Valkyrie is primed for such a challenge and sits perfectly within the ACO’s new ‘hypercar’ rule framework. Bringing to bear all of our previous experience and knowledge of competing at the top levels of motorsport, we embark on this most ambitious project with the necessary ingredients for success. What could be more evocative than the wail of an Aston Martin V12 leading the charge into the night on the Mulsanne straight? ”
Emma to miss the next race at Misano, Italy
Emma Kimilainen, 29, from Finland, has been advised by Hintsa Performance, W Series’ contracted health and wellbeing experts, not to drive at Misano, Italy, this coming Friday and Saturday.
Both W Series’ reserve drivers – Sarah Bovy, 29, from Belgium, and Vivien Keszthelyi, 18, from Hungary – will drive on both days, completing a line-up of 19 entrants.
Emma Kimilainen said:
“I’m very disappointed not to be able to race at Misano this weekend, but I understand the advice I’ve been given and I’ll abide by it.
“I feel I’ve been on top of the W Series car in the practice sessions and qualifying sessions I completed at Hockenheim and Zolder, and it’s obviously a great pity that, through no fault of my own, I didn’t get a chance to translate that pace into race results.
“But my hope is now to be fully fit for Norisring in early July, so that I can finish the W Series season with three strong performances at Norisring, at Assen and at Brands Hatch.”
Dave Ryan, W Series Racing Director, said:
“We’re disappointed for Emma, who has been competent and quick whenever she’s driven the W Series car, but of course we look forward to welcoming her back as and when she’s fit enough to compete again.
“In the meantime, we’re happy to be able to offer the opportunity to race at Misano to both Sarah [Bovy] and Vivien [Keszthelyi], our two reserve drivers.
“Sarah and Vivien were both entered for the W Series race at Zolder last month, albeit at the eleventh hour, but Sarah didn’t even get to start and Vivien was involved in a collision with another competitor. Therefore, it’s a positive development for them both, and indeed for all of us, that they’ll travel to Misano with the foreknowledge that they’ll be competing in both practice sessions, in qualifying and in the race.
“We hope they’ll both work hard with their engineers, will duly perform well, and will therefore be able to record good results come Saturday afternoon.”
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