Eco Racing Withdraws from Sebring Eco Racing has reluctantly had to withdraw its new bio diesel Radical SR10 from the 12 Hours of Sebring due to the incorrect provision of homologation papers from chassis manufacturer, Radical.
However, the Team has taken many positives from being at Sebring over the past days and will return to action for the 4th round of the ALMS at Salt Lake City in May, thereafter completing the full ALMS season with its unique production engined bio diesel LMP1 car. It is possible that this will increase to a two car effort.
ALMS Chief Operating Officer and Sebring Race Director, Tim Mayer said; “We have been delighted to welcome Eco Racing into the ALMS and greatly regret the circumstances of this situation, which were totally beyond the Team’s control. Eco Racing is exactly the sort of professional and innovative organization that we seek to attract to our Series and we look forward to seeing the cars competing in ALMS from Salt Lake City onwards.”
It was in late December 2007 that pioneering Diesel race engineer Ian Dawson, businessman Simon Wright and Finnish racing legend, Harri Toivonen formed Eco Project and sat down with Radical Sportscars to agree the scope of the LMP1 race programme, known as Eco Racing.
Just eight weeks later (Wednesday 5th March), at a cold and windy Snetterton, England, Simon Wright drove the Eco Racing Radical SR10 -V10 out of the garage for the briefest of shake-downs, before the car was flown to Sebring in Florida, to attempt the hardest sportscar race in the US – the 12 Hours of Sebring.
To undertake such an arduous race with so little preparation would be difficult for an established works team, let alone a two-month-old consortium. A Herculean effort by the Team saw the stunning green and white car be presented to the Technical Scruitineering Team where, much to the frustration and disappointment of all parties present, the absence of homologation papers allowed only basic dimensional eligibility checks to be carried out.
Team Principal, Simon Wright said. “This is massively disappointing for all of us, but just strengthens our resolve to get to Salt Lake City and go racing. The interest and feedback we have received in the build up to this week and here at the circuit has been phenomenal and we would like to thank all race fans for the great reception we have had.”
Team Manager, Ian Dawson confirmed, “Eco Racing has climbed a mountain in the last eight weeks and we knew we had another to climb here at Sebring. We need to sit down with our chassis partner, understand the issues and use this time before Salt Lake City to test and prepare fully for the season ahead.”
In 2004 Dawson raced the first ever bio-diesel sportscar at Le Mans, two years ahead of Audi’s diesel racer, and three years ahead of Peugeot, before a lack of resource put the programme on ice.
The philosophy of Eco Project is to search for and develop eco friendly solutions and apply them across all facets of the race programme. Testing on Jatropha based bio diesel, recycling tyres and developing bodywork made of hemp fibre are just three areas that the project is working on.
To take on the sportscar establishment, with an eco-friendly, production engined race car is going to be an exciting, challenging and arduous road!