Lola at Le Mans: 4 day countdown! The 78th running of the world’s greatest race the 24 Heures du Mans will have 10 Lola-designed and built sports cars on the grid this weekend.
Five different configurations of Lola LMP design, five different powerplants, eight teams and 30 drivers representing 10 nations will aim to complete the toughest endurance sports car race on the global motor sport calendar.
After achieving a richly merited fourth overall and second in LMP2 at last year’s 24 Hours, Huntingdon-designed and built LMP cars will once again be the most represented customer sports car on the grid this weekend.
Drayson Racing and Rebellion Racing have made no secret of their aim to be the first petrol powered car home in 2010. Both privateer teams have shown outstanding flashes of speed this year so far and with stronger and more experienced drivers in all three of these V10 normally-aspirated powered Lolas, many eyes will be following the green of the UK and the gold and red of Switzerland.
Aston Martin Racing and Signature Plus will maximize their V12-powered Lolas this weekend. Each of the AMR -entered Lola B09/60 LMP1 Coupes have new faces on the driving side but the team has continuity on the pit wall and much more experience of the Lola this time around.
Autocon flies the star-spangled banner as the only US-based LMP team at Le Mans this year with its striking orange Lola B06/10 LMP1. The AER turbo-powered car will be the only open cockpit Lola on the grid but with the experienced Hugh Chamberlain working with the team, the Californians could achieve their aim of a good finish come Sunday afternoon
In LMP2, the 2005 and 2006 LMP2 champion, RML, returns for its seventh consecutive 24 Hours with a Lola sports car. The now famous red, white and blue will once again be a strong crowd favorite and welcomes back 1988 Le Mans winner, Andy Wallace after a year’s absence.
Racing Box showed well in the early running at Le Mans last year and the all-Italian team is back again in 2010. Despite an inexperienced driver line-up, the Judd-powered and Dunlop-shod Lola LMP2 should get quicker throughout the weekend.
Kruse Schiller Motorsport returns for a third Le Mans with its Lola LMP2 chassis but this year run with a Judd powerplant. Kai Kruse and Hardy Schiller are among the most committed team bosses in endurance racing and will be keen to build on the promise they showed at last month’s Spa 1000kms.
2010 marks the 50th anniversary of Lola competing at Le Mans. The world class engineering that has seen countless successes across the globe will once again be on view to millions of fans and TV viewers worldwide.
As ever Lola will be flying the flag for the UK’s renowned engineering industry and showcasing why so many teams put their trust in its technical capabilities.
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Photos by David Lord