Tequila Patron ESM to bring back HPD ARX-03bs before Ligier run in FIA WEC

Leave a comment

A tight timeline and need for further development on the new HPD ARX-04bs has required a change in course for Tequila Patron ESM. The new coupes needed further development before their homologation date, 30 days before the season opener, and the car would have been locked in once homologated.

The team will instead run the existing open-top, tried and true HPD ARX-03bs at their next three track appearances, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, the Prologue at Paul Ricard and FIA World Endurance Championship season opening Six Hours of Silverstone.

From Spa in May, the team will switch to two new Ligier JS P2 Honda coupes for the rest of the team’s LMP2 campaign.

“After being with Honda for 10 years and knowing Nick Wirth, undoubtedly the ARX-04b will fulfill its expectation with some additional development,” said Scott Sharp, ESM team owner and driver.

“Quite simply, that will take a bit of time and we’re racing against the clock with the homologation deadline and start of the WEC season around the corner.

“To ensure a successful WEC season and championship run for Tequila Patrón ESM and HPD, we have decided our best opportunity to win races and the LMP2 title this season is to compete with an existing homologated chassis.”

“We very much appreciate the effort that Tequila Patrón ESM has undertaken on HPD’s behalf to get the ARX-04b on track and helping to identify teething issues with our new chassis. We are naturally disappointed that we are not yet ready for homologation, but we cannot homologate a car that is not yet meeting all of its targets,” said Steve Eriksen, HPD vice president and chief operating officer.

Steve Torrence takes NHRA points lead with Gatornationals victory

NHRA Gainesville Steve Torrence
Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Leave a comment

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Two-time defending NHRA Top Fuel champion Steve Torrence took the points lead Sunday in the AMALIE Motor Oil Gatornationals, beating his father, Billy, in the final round at Gainesville Raceway.

Torrence had a 3.809-second run at 322.11 mph to win for the third time this year and 39th overall. He is now on track for another championship despite missing the season opener.

“We’ve got some good momentum and to be in the points lead, it’s a testament to how hard these guys work,” Steve Torrence said after the NHRA Gainesville victory. “We’ve just got to stay focused and concentrate on what the task at hand is, and that’s trying to win a championship. These guys give me an unbelievable race car and you just try not to screw it up.”

Ron Capps won in Funny Car, Alex Laughlin in Pro Stock and Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Capps raced to his second win this year and 66th overall, beating Tim Wilkerson with a 3.937 at 323.12 in a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.

Laughlin topped Aaron Stanfield with a 7.068 at 204.76 in a Chevrolet Camaro for his first win this season and fourth in his career. Smith rode to his first victory in 2020 and 25th overall, topping Andrew Hines with a 6.843 at 196.99 on an EBR.