Drayson Racing will move to the premier Le Mans Prototype One (LMP1) division and debut its Judd V10-powered Lola B09/60 in the 12th Annual Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta on 22-26 September.
Drivers Paul Drayson and two-time British GT Champion Jonny Cocker will be joined by two-time Le Mans Series GT2 Champion Rob Bell at the 1000 mile/10 hour, American Le Mans Series classic in September.
"LMP1 is the premier class of world sports car racing,” said driver/owner Paul Drayson. “These 600-700 horsepower racing cars are the ultimate in speed and technology. They can accelerate from 0-100 mph in three seconds and reach top speeds in excess of 200 mph. I'm really looking forward to the race next month. It is going to be a challenge- but an exhilarating one."
Dale White continues his role as team manager with oversight of the effort, as the full GT2 team structure moves into LMP1.
"I can't describe the energy inside the team right now," he said. “We know we have a major task before us but everyone is pulling together and sees the common goal. What has been done in such a short period of time is impressive to see. We are indebted to all of the crew, Lola, Judd, Michelin, all of our partners and the ACO for making this happen so quickly."
Long supporters of the environmental movement in motorsports - and with Drayson and Cocker having won the first-ever national victory in the UK for a bio-ethanol fuelled car - Drayson Racing will use the P1 platform to develop and advance new technologies for improved efficiency and performance.
"The opportunity to develop and showcase green technologies in motorsport is at the heart of Drayson Racing's core mission. The LMP1 regulations allow the widest possible opportunities for us to do this,” said owner Elspeth Drayson.
The working partnerships with both Lola Cars and Engine Developments Ltd - the parent company of Judd - will provide additional avenues for the evolution and testing of these technologies.
"Lola are delighted to be working closely with the Drayson Racing family. The timelines to the first race are challenging but this situation is often when Lola performs at its best,” said Lola managing director Robin Brundle. “The whole team at Lola has accepted the challenge and is working flat out to deliver another top LMP Coupe, which will be the 24th sold since the inception of the present LMP rules in 2005.
“The focus on Green Technologies in Motorsport continues to be of great interest to Lola and we look forward to supporting Drayson Racing in their quest to use energy more efficiently and to continue in ensuring that Lola are the LMP market leaders."