Manor and TRS Racing have confirmed a step-up from LMP2 into LMP1 for the FIA World Endurance Championship’s new 2018-2019 “Super Season,” as part of the quest to attract new privateer entries into the category.
The Manor team will do so with Ginetta Cars, although the engine selection nor number of cars it will field are to be determined. Manor, entered under the CEFC Manor TRS Racing banner this season, has fielded two Oreca 07 Gibsons in the LMP2 class, for its second year in FIA WEC.
“I think that the LMP1 category provides a fantastic challenge for us but we can rely on a lot of experience gained over the years, in particular those spent in Formula 1, relating to the management of the design, research, testing and development processes that are so important for a successful LMP1 team,” said Graeme Lowdon, Manor Endurance Racing Sporting Director.
Lawrence Tomlinson, Chairman, Ginetta Cars, added: “I am delighted with the confirmation of the selection by TRS Racing and Manor Endurance Racing of the Ginetta LMP1 for their program. The opportunities for all involved here are tremendous, for Ginetta, for the team, and for their backers. To take on endurance racing at this level is one of the toughest technical challenges in the world. It’s great to have a racing partner who relishes those challenges just as much as we do.”
The FIA WEC “Super Season” begins next May in Spa-Francorchamps, before the 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans next June 16-17. Both Spa and Le Mans feature twice on the revised two-year calendar.
The Manor LMP1 news comes only a day after DragonSpeed’s announced plans to step up as well. With lone manufacturer Toyota also evaluating a return, the car count in LMP1 might not be as bad as initially feared.