Murphy Protoypes withdraws from Red Bull Ring round of 2014 ELMS
|By Gary Watkins||Tuesday, July 15th 2014, 11:34 GMT|
The race-winning Murphy Prototypes European Le Mans Series team will miss this weekend's race at the Red Bull Ring.
The Anglo-Irish squad, winner of last season's Paul Ricard finale, has withdrawn its ORECA-Nissan 03R LMP2 from round three of the ELMS in Austria, but is confident of returning to the series for the final two rounds at Paul Ricard and Estoril in September and October respectively.
The move follows the breakdown of its deal with sometime Marussia Formula 1 test driver Rodolfo Gonzalez and the failure to put together what team boss Greg Murphy described as "another potential race-winning line-up" in time for the Red Bull Ring.
"Neither the team nor Rodolfo were happy with the results that we were achieving, so we have decided to part company," Murphy told AUTOSPORT.
"In the timescale that we had, we weren't able to put together the kind of competitive line-up we wanted for the Red Bull Ring.
"We will definitely be back for the final two rounds and are 90 percent of the way to signing drivers."
Karun Chandhok and Nathanael Berthon, who were part of the Murphy line-up at Le Mans, were listed on the Red Bull Ring entry list but never had deals to contest the race.
Murphy's withdrawal reduces the P2 entry for this weekend to eight cars.
LMP2 regular Pierre Ragues, who raced for Larbre Competition at the Le Mans 24 Hours, is joining the Morand Racing squad for the Austrian event.
The 30-year-old will share Morand's Morgan-Judd/BMW LMP2 with full-season drivers Christian Klien and Gary Hirsch.