Strakka to run Acura in LMS

Strakka Racing has become the first team to secure an Acura LMP car for use in Europe and will run the LMP2 ARX-01 in next year's Le Mans Series

Strakka to run Acura in LMS

The team stepped up from GT racing to run a Ginetta-Zytek in 2009, and took a shock pole for the LMS opener at Catalunya with Danny Watts.

Acura's LMP2 car took outright race wins in the American Le Mans Series last season, and dominated the LMP2 class this season with Fernandez Racing.

Stephen Eriksen, technical director of the Honda Performance Development group responsible for the Acura LMP programme, is looking forward to seeing how the car performs in Europe.

"We are excited to be competing for the first time in the Le Mans Series LMP2 class and to show that our updated ARX-01c can compete on European circuits as well as it has on American circuits," he said. "Thanks to Strakka Racing for giving us that opportunity. We look forward to working with them in the coming year."

Strakka team manager Piers Phillips said the tie-up with HPD offered the best future for his squad.

"The move to HPD has been a logical step for us," he said. "We examined all the options open to us, and swiftly recognised that HPD offered us a relationship and product that would give us the best opportunity to move forward with a serious manufacturer.

"We also felt it was sensible for us to aim for the top in LMP2, rather than attempt another season in LMP1, where the situation looks set to become increasingly dominated by factory squads. The budget for a privateer team such as ourselves is not hugely different in LMP1 and LMP2, but the potential for good results is poles apart - probably quite literally."

The team tested the Acura at Misano in November, with Strakka drivers Watts and Nick Leventis joined by Acura's lead ALMS driver David Brabham, and Jonny Kane and Andrea Piccini, who drove LMP2 Lolas for Speedy Sebah and Racing Box respectively this year.

"David was simply superb - a pleasure to work with, and a consummate driver," said Phillips. "Jonny and Andrea are both familiar with the LMP2 Lola, and this, combined with Andrea's local knowledge, gave us an excellent benchmark to judge against.

"The results confirmed our best hopes, and we all recognised the enormous 'wow factor' this car generates."

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