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New Rebellion-Toyota LMP1 car to miss first WEC test

The new Rebellion-Toyota LMP1 contender will miss the official World Endurance Championship test at the end of March.

The Anglo-Swiss team has decided against rushing to ready the first Rebellion R-One, designed and built by ORECA, for the two-day test at Paul Ricard on March 28-29.

It will instead take a pair of the Toyota-powered Lolas in the specification that they completed last year's WEC.

Rebellion team manager Bart Hayden told AUTOSPORT: "It will be really close, but the car is not going to be ready for Ricard because we decided that it would be foolhardy to try to rush it.

"It might have been possible to run the car at Ricard, but we would have had nothing in the way of spares.

"It would have been just a shakedown, which is something we didn't want to do in the public gaze."

Hayden explained that it is expected that the first R-One will make its maiden run the week after the official test.

"It is not 100 per cent fixed, but we do expect to test that week and it will be at Ricard, because that's where ORECA is based," he said.

Rebellion is taking two of its Lolas to the test in order to allow its drivers "to blow the cobwebs away and get the team operational again", he said.

New signing Dominik Kraihamer will get his first experience of the team at Ricard and it is possible that Rebellion will have a fifth of its six-strong driver line-up in place for the test.

Hayden did not rule out Rebellion running its Lolas at the WEC series opener at Silverstone on April 20.

"We don't want to, but we can't say 100 per cent that we won't," he said.

"It would be allowed within the regulations; it would be up to the FIA Endurance Committee to come up with the [engine air] restrictor we would have to run."

The German Lotus team's new AER-engined T129 LMP1 is also missing from the entry list for the Ricard test.

LMP1 manufacturers Audi, Toyota and Porsche will be at the test, which is mandatory except for reasons of force majeure, with two cars each and a full complement of drivers.

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