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Acura announces LMP1 plans.

Acura has confirmed that it will enter the LMP1 class of the American Le Mans Series for the 2009 season.

Two Acura ARX-02a cars will be campaigned during the season by de Ferran Motorsports and Patron Highcroft Racing, with testing of the new car due to start in November, while Lowe's Fernandez Racing will continue to run in the LMP2 class.

Since joining the series at the start of last year with a three-team LMP2 entry – expanded to four this year with the addition of de Ferran Motorsport to the grid – Acura has taken five class victories as well as an overall win for Highcroft pairing David Brabham and Scott Sharp at Lime Rock earlier this year. Acura teams have also taken four overall pole positions in that same period.

“Since launching the Acura American Le Mans Series programme in 2007, our goal has always been to compete at the highest level of sports-car racing,” John Mendel, executive vice president of auto operations for American Honda Motor Company, said. “The LMP1 class of the American Le Mans Series represents the pinnacle of sports-car racing in this country, from both a competitive and technological standpoint.

“As we prepare to elevate Acura to tier one status among luxury road cars, we feel it only appropriate to make this move to the uppermost level of American Le Mans Series competition, as well.”

“This is the logical next step in our business plan,” Erik Berkman, HPD president, added. “The Acura sports-car programme has energised HPD's associates and met numerous objectives during its first two seasons of American Le Mans Series competition.

“We feel we are fully prepared to take on this new challenge.”


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
American Lemans Series. 21-24 August 2008. Mosport International Raceway. Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. Acura`s up front at green flag start.
David Brabham - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
David Brabham - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
David Brabham - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
David Brabham - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
Peter Dumbreck - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
Karun Chandhok - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
David Brabham - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
David Brabham - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
Karun Chandhok - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
David Brabham - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
Peter Dumbreck - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
Peter Dumbreck - JRM Racing HPD ARX-03a
Audi`s Dindo Capello, Allan McNish and Tom Kristensen win Sebring 12 Hours   [image courtesy Audi Motorsport]
Audi leads into the night at Sebring 12 Hours   [image courtesy Audi Motorsport]
Audi leads at start of Sebring 12 Hours   [image courtesy Audi Motorsport]
Brian Redman piloting the Chevron B16 of ALMS boss Bobby Rahal at Sebring [Pic credit: Legends of Motorsports]
ALMS team boss Bobby Rahal in action in his Chevron B16 at Silverstone [Pic credit: Charlie Wooding]

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Just a Fan - Unregistered

August 31, 2008 1:31 PM

Also just to comment on something roadrage said - Audi actually DID ask for some quite large favors when they decided to go diesel. Both the engine capacity, which is 1.5l MORE than you can have if you want to run a turbo charged petrol engine... and the initial weight changes to LMP1 that accompanied the R10's introduction. It was widely reported at the time (even by Audi) that they struggled to make the 900Kg minimum. The ACO was lobbied quite heavily by Audi to change the weights to ensure there was no "disadvantage to the new technology".

Jay - Unregistered

September 02, 2008 4:24 PM

With Acura departing the P2 class, the P1 will return to its dominant place in the ALMS series. Granted Audi has been faring well this year, last year's performance by the Penske Porsche's did put a hamper on Audi's reputation. For a while, it seemed as though P1 and P2 shouldn't be running in the same series if they could compete with each other fairly evenly (other than straights), but Audi has shown that they are fully capable of showing the abilities of the P1 car once again. SPEED Report said that the Acura P1 cars will be gas-electric hybrid powered.



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