The European endurance championship (European Le Mans Series) will be the priority for IDEC SPORT in the 2019 season. Patrice Lafargue’s team will once again compete with two cars: an Oreca in the top cars and a Ligier reserved for gentlemen drivers. The team will also be returning to the 24 Hour Series with the Mercedes AMG GT3. As in 2018, IDEC SPORT is preparing to compete with two cars in the LMP2 category of the European Le Mans Series (ELMS) in the 2019 season. IDEC Sport will be lining up with two cars (an Oreca and a Ligier) at the six meetings on the calendar.
The trio of Oreca drivers remains unchanged: Paul Lafargue, Paul-Loup Chatin and Momo Rojas will be attempting to unleash the full potential of IDEC Sport taking things still further in terms of sporting performance. After their third place in the overall rankings in 2018, expectations are high for #28. “I’m really pleased that the three of us can continue. Our trio worked well last year and we really built up something. Things are really coming together,” declared Paul Lafargue, a few days before he is due to get back in the driver’s seat after several months of convalescence. “I hope we will perform as well as last year, or even better, and that we will once again be aiming for a great result at the end of the season. We are feeling confident.”
In the Ligier, Patrice Lafargue and Erik Maris will be joined by Stéphane Adler, an IDEC SPORT driver in the Porsche 991 Cup, who will be making his debut in LMP2. “Patrice (Lafargue) has been talking to me about the P2 for a while. It took time for the idea to grow and then, I took the decision. These are cars we dream of. Even if I spent six or seven years with the CN prototype, I still feel apprehensive. But I’m there to enjoy myself and we’re all here to have fun,” explained Stéphane Adler. “I started to prepare myself with tests in LMP3 in Barcelona and Portimao. It is something new for me to be in a closed prototype, which is as heavy as this and with so much power. But it is enjoyable to drive. And when I think that it is going to be even faster in LMP2… We have four days of private trials planned at Le Castellet before the start of the season. It’s a huge challenge to be in such a competitive championship. I love that.”
ELMS Calendar for 2019:
Le Castellet (France) – 14 April
Monza (Italy) – 12 May
Barcelona (Spain) – 21 July
Silverstone (GB) 31 August
Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) – 22 September
Portimao (Portugal) – 27 October
The 24-Hour Series by Creventic
The 24-Hour series is another leading championship for IDEC SPORT. While the name makes you think of major endurance races, this championship only involves GT cars. IDEC SPORT will be competing with the Mercedes AMG GT3 on the tracks around Europe at the five scheduled events.
24-Hour Series Calendar for 2019
Mugello (Italy) – 29 and 30 March
Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) – 19 and 20 April
Brno (Czech Republic) – 24 and 25 May
Portimao (Portugal) – 6 and 7 July
Barcelona (Spain) – 31 August and 1st September
Aiming for Le Mans
While the main programme remains the ELMS, the pinnacle of the season will of course be the 87th edition of the Le Mans 24-Hour Race. Patrice Lafargue’s goal is to see both cars lining up at the start of the 24 hour race on 15th and 16th June, and to be sharing the enjoyment in Le Mans once again with his son, but this time with each of them in their own car. “IDEC SPORT got off to a humble start in the ELMS without registering for the Le Mans 24-Hour Race. We entered with one car in 2017 and got an excellent result. We stepped up our performance in 2018, once again with one car and I think that the ACO feels confident about IDEC SPORT. I think that should be noticed,” stressed Paul-Loup Chatin, the LMP2 driver in pole position in the 2018 Le Mans 24-Hour Race.
The Automobile Club de l’Ouest will reveal the list of sixty entrants for the 2019 Le Mans 24-Hour Race in two parts. Fifty entrants will be officially announced on 11th February. The final ten places and ten reserve cars will have to wait until 1st March.