As we’re a little less than one month out from the 2014 24 Hours of Le Mans, the full entry list for the race has been updated by the ACO to reflect team additions and withdrawals, and all 168 drivers for the 56 cars named.
Tuesday’s addition and subtraction sees the Lotus team, with its yet untested T129 LMP1-L entry removed and Millennium Racing back in its place with an LMP2 ORECA 03 Nissan for John Martin, Fabien Giroix and Oliver Turvey, the No. 22.
Millennium withdrew from the opening two races of the 2014 FIA World Endurance Championship season due to late payments, which left Mike Conway, Stefan Johansson and Shinji Nakano (would have driven the team’s No. 23 car) and the No. 22’s drivers sidelined.
The entry list for Le Mans has these stipulations: the LMP1 and GTE-Pro classes have no limitations on the number of Platinum and Gold-rated drivers (fully professional drivers), while the LMP2 class requires at least one Silver-rated driver (non-professional who makes their source of income elsewhere from racing) and the GTE-Am class only allows one Platinum or Gold driver, and at least one Bronze-rated driver (fully gentleman driver).
So when you see the P, G, S, or B designation by each driver’s name on the entry list, you know what that means.
OFFICIAL 24 HOURS OF LE MANS ENTRY LIST, UPDATED 5/20/14
In a continuing effort to help fans keep track of the on track action, SuperMotocross is in the process of developing and implementing leader lights for the unified series.
Currently Supercross (SMX) utilizes stanchions in the infield that are triggered manually by a race official. At least two stanchions are used in each race as a way to draw the eye to the leader, which is especially useful in the tight confines of the stadium series when lapping often begins before the halfway mark in the 22-bike field. This system has been in place for the past two decades.
Later this year, a fully automated system will move to the bike itself to replace the old system. At that point, fans will be able to identify the leader regardless of where he is on track.
The leader lights were tested in the second Anaheim round this year. An example can be seen at the 1:45 mark in the video above on the No. 69 bike.
“What we don’t want to do is move too fast, where it’s confusing to people,” said Mike Muye, senior director of operations for Supercross and SMX in a press release. “We’ve really just focused on the leader at this point with the thought that maybe down the road we’ll introduce others.”
Scheduled to debut with the first SuperMotocross World Championship race at zMax Dragway, located just outside the Charlotte Motor Speedway, a 3D carbon fiber-printed LED light will be affixed to each motorcycle. Ten timing loops positioned around the track will trigger the lights of the leader, which will turn green.
SMX’s partner LiveTime Scoring helped develop and implement the system that has been tested in some form or fashion since 2019.
When the leader lights are successfully deployed, SuperMotocross will explore expanding the system to identify the second- and third-place riders. Depending on need and fan acceptance, more positions could be added.
SuperMotocross is exploring future enhancements, including allowing for live fan interaction with the lights and ways to use the lighting system during the race’s opening ceremony.
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