Turbo teams question weight break for non-turbo WEC LMP1 cars

The SMP and ByKolles privateer teams running turbocharged LMP1 cars in the World Endurance Championship have questioned the weight break given to their normally-aspirated rivals for this weekend's Silverstone race

Turbo teams question weight break for non-turbo WEC LMP1 cars

The two turbo-equipped P1 privateers present at Silverstone have suggested there is no need for the 15kg reduction in the minimum weight for the Rebellion and DragonSpeed teams running the Gibson atmospheric V8 laid down in the Equivalence of Technology for the British WEC round.

Gaetan Jego, technical director of the ART-run SMP Racing squad, told Autosport: "The Le Mans 24 Hours showed that we were pretty much on the same terms on pace as Rebellion, but 15kg is quite a lot around a track like Silverstone, probably between five and six tenths.

"We don't like this EoT - we just want a fair fight."

ByKolles team principal Manfredi Ravetto agreed with SMP's estimation of the effects of new 818kg minimum weight for the Gibson-powered Rebellion R-13 and DragonSpeed's BR Engineering BR1.

"On a track like Silverstone we have calculated the weight advantage to be worth roughly seven tenths," he said. "We are not complaining, only looking for an explanation."

Vincent Beaumesnil, sporting director of series promoter the Automobile Club de l'Ouest, explained the intent was always to balance turbo and non-turbo privateer P1 cars.

He said a lack of data on the engines "some of which had not even been on the dyno" when the original EoT was formulated prevented this at the Spa WEC opener and Le Mans.

"The decision was made to balance normally-aspirated and turbo engines last year and now was the time to make an adjustment," he said.

The move follows analysis of data accrued by the ACO and the FIA, with which it jointly sets the WEC rules, from Spa and Le Mans.

The Rebellion was the fastest of the privateer P1s at Le Mans, but Beaumesnil explained the P1 fuel-flow regulations have different effects on turbo and non-turbo engines.

The Rebellions and the DragonSpeed BRE have received the weight break because the fuel flow for the privateers has already increased to the maximum 115kg per hour allowed.

This adjustment follows eradication of the original 0.25% performance margin in favour of Toyota - equivalent of half a second at Le Mans - built into the original EoT.

The Silverstone EoT has also allowed normally-aspirated cars more fuel per stint, a reflection of the greater efficiency of the AER and Nissan engines that power the SMP BRE and the ByKolles ENSO CLM P1/01.

This is designed to equalise the stint length of the cars, which will no longer be mandated at a set number of laps as at Spa and Le Mans.

ByKolles will contest the Silverstone 6 Hours with just two drivers in team regular Oliver Webb and IndyCar racer Rene Binder.

Binder, who is contesting a limited IndyCar programme this year, is joining the line-up after a successful test with the team at Spa earlier this month.

shares
comments
New Aston Martin GTE car gets rules break for Silverstone WEC

Previous article

New Aston Martin GTE car gets rules break for Silverstone WEC

Next article

BMW's first WEC win with M8 GTE car a 'matter of time' - Farfus

BMW's first WEC win with M8 GTE car a 'matter of time' - Farfus
Load comments

About this article

Series WEC
Author Gary Watkins
How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname Plus

How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname

Sportscar racing lost one of it's greatest talents 20 years ago today when Bob Wollek was knocked from his bicycle prior to the Sebring 12 Hours. The enigmatic Frenchman never won the Le Mans 24 Hours, but many still remember today why 'Brilliant Bob' became a legend

WEC
Mar 16, 2021
Top 10 moments of an underrated British great Plus

Top 10 moments of an underrated British great

Brian Redman was one of the best sportscar drivers of the 1960s and 1970s, as well as a three-time champion on the fearsome American Formula 5000 scene. To celebrate his 84th birthday Autosport contacted him about his best races – and he decided to write the piece himself…

WEC
Mar 9, 2021
How an endurance racing boom could help one of LMP2's top teams Plus

How an endurance racing boom could help one of LMP2's top teams

The G-Drive squad has been a mainstay of endurance racing in recent years, and has linked up with Russian manufacturer Aurus in recent years to promote its brand. With a change of rules in endurance racing's top tables, the team could be well-placed to take advantage of a potential boom...

WEC
Mar 7, 2021
How Ferrari’s Hypercar project could bolster Leclerc’s legacy Plus

How Ferrari’s Hypercar project could bolster Leclerc’s legacy

OPINION: Ferrari's planned return to the top category at the Le Mans 24 Hours has further heightened anticipation for the 2023 race. Few concrete details are currently known, but already it has a high-profile superstar angling for involvement, which would make a refreshing change

WEC
Mar 5, 2021
Why Ferrari is ending its 50-year top-flight sportscar exile Plus

Why Ferrari is ending its 50-year top-flight sportscar exile

Making a return to top-flight sportscar racing after 50 years away, Ferrari will enter the Le Mans Hypercar ranks in 2023. The Italian marque denies the link with Formula 1's new cost cap that frees up resources, but it's certainly no coincidence...

WEC
Feb 25, 2021
The ground-up refresh behind Toyota's new Le Mans challenger Plus

The ground-up refresh behind Toyota's new Le Mans challenger

Toyota's new GR010 contender for the World Endurance Championship's Hypercar era has little in common with the LMP1 TS050 that preceded it. But within the confines of the scaled back new rules, its latest challenger will be no less formidable a prospect

WEC
Jan 22, 2021
The Porsche icon that forged sportscar racing's greatest era Plus

The Porsche icon that forged sportscar racing's greatest era

Porsche is returning to the top class of Le Mans with an LMDh prototype that it hopes will write its next successful chapter in sportscar racing. But it will have to go some to emulate its 956/962, a car which defines the Group C age more than any other

WEC
Dec 16, 2020
How Kristensen forged the Mr Le Mans legend Plus

How Kristensen forged the Mr Le Mans legend

He is synonymous with success at the Circuit de la Sarthe, but Tom Kristensen's sportscar legacy amounts to much more than his record-breaking nine Le Mans wins, as the most successful driver ever at Sebring and a world champion to boot

WEC
Dec 5, 2020