BR Engineering launches 2018 WEC LMP1 project with Dallara and SMP

Russian company BR Engineering will step up to the World Endurance Championship's LMP1 category in 2018 with a prototype designed in collaboration with Dallara, and run by SMP Racing

BR Engineering launches 2018 WEC LMP1 project with Dallara and SMP

BR Engineering president Boris Rotenberg and Dallara CEO Andrea Pontremoli have signed an agreement to jointly develop the BR1 machine in 2017, before it enters the LMP1-L class with SMP in the '18 WEC.

The project began in Italy on Thursday, and all of 2017 will be spent on design, construction studies and tests, plus the FIA homologation process.

Leading single-seater and DTM team ART Grand Prix will be involved in the development of the car via trackside operations.

The LMP1 project is the next step for BR Engineering after the launch in 2015 of its BR01 LMP2 car, which took third place in the '16 European Le Mans Series, pole position for the Daytona 24 Hours and a class podium finish in this year's Le Mans 24 Hours.

BR Engineering's decision to focus efforts on the development of a new prototype was influenced by the restriction of the list of companies permitted to manufacture cars in the LMP2 category, as well as Audi leaving the LMP1-H category.

"We raised a challenge to ourselves," said Rotenberg.

"It was possible to buy a chassis of one of the four manufacturers of LMP2 for a season, also it was possible to leave for good, but we have always chosen our own path.

"Not necessarily and not always the easiest, but [this way] is for sure the most interesting and promising.

"The aim of the project was and remains the development of Russian motorsport, including the technology sector.

"We invest a lot in support of the Russian drivers to help talented children to start a career in karting and successfully continue it in GTs, prototypes or single-seaters.

"Our prototype LMP2 BR01 is the first Russian car on the Le Mans podium."

BR Engineering will now have its own office in Dallara's factory in Parma as it embarks on the LMP1 design.

"BR1 is the continuation of this project, aimed primarily at attracting higher technology in our country," said Rotenberg of the LMP1 programme.

"Dallara's name is known to anyone who is familiar with the motor racing.

"Now we have become partners, and BR Engineering's new project has started here in Italy, where the best designers and engineers, both from Russia and from Europe, will create a Russian prototype for Russian team SMP Racing.

"They are going to face a lot of work."

The BR LMP1 design joins IndyCar, LMP2, GP2, GP3, Formula V8 3.5, Super Formula, Formula 3 and Formula E, plus manufacturer collaborations with Alfa Romeo, Audi, Bugatti, Ferrari, KTM, Lamborghini, Maserati and others, among Dallara's current projects.

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