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Featured 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans Entry List Revealed

Discussion in 'World Endurance Championship' started by R.J. O'Connell, May 14, 2015.

  1. R.J. O'Connell

    R.J. O'Connell
    Commentator/Contributor Staff Premium Member

    le mans start.jpg

    The FIA and ACO published this year's 56-car entry list for the 24 Hours of Le Mans, to be staged 13-14 June at the Circuit de la Sarthe.

    The entry list is headlined by fourteen entries in the premier LMP1 class, supported by nineteen LMP2 entries, and twenty-three total GTE class entries - nine in the Pro sub-class, with the remaining fourteen in the Am division.

    The full entry list can be downloaded by clicking this link.

    As the defending World Endurance Champions, Toyota Racing's TS040 hybrid prototypes will carry numbers 1 and 2. There has been a positive development in the last week regarding the #1 entry, as Kazuki Nakajima is now listed as the third driver alongside reigning World Drivers' Champions Sebastien Buémi and Anthony Davidson. Two weeks ago, during practice for the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, Nakajima was involved in a heavy crash and suffered back injuries that would require surgery and an expected recovery time of up to three months. Originally stating that Nakajima would "need a miracle" to be fit for Le Mans, Toyota announced that he would be relieved for reserve driver Kamui Kobayashi.


    On Tuesday, Toyota Racing announced that Nakajima is now fit to test for Toyota in the first official Le Mans test session on 31 May, with the goal of returning to drive at Le Mans alongside Buémi and Davidson at Le Mans, following a recent back operation in Nice, France. Nakajima is continuing his rehabilitation in Europe, and if cleared to race, the #1 Toyota team should be one of the favorites to win outright. Last year, Nakajima became the first Japanese driver to take pole position for the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

    There has also been a change in the driver lineup at NISMO, who have brought in 2012 Nissan GT Academy champion Mark Shulzhitskiy of Russia to drive the #21 Nissan GT-R LM NISMO alongside fellow GT Academy graduate Lucas Ordoñez and reigning Super GT champion Tsugio Matsuda.


    Shulzhitskiy, who made his Le Mans debut one year ago, relieves 2009 Le Mans winner Marc Gené, who announced last week that he would voluntarily step out of the cockpit and take on an advisory role with Nissan at Le Mans. This means that three former Nissan GT Academy winners - Shulzhitskiy, Ordoñez, and 2011 champion Jann Mardenborough - will drive for the NISMO team at Le Mans in their much-anticipated return to the premier class.

    There are no changes at Audi Sport Team Joest, whose #7 entry driven by three-time and defending Le Mans champions André Lotterer, Benoît Tréluyer, and Marcel Fässler, remains undefeated in 2015. Both they and Porsche Team will keep their three-car entries intact from Spa-Francorchamps.

    LMP2 is headlined by defending WEC champions G-Drive Racing, who won at Silverstone with the lineup of Roman Rusinov, Julien Canal, and Sam Bird, along with last year's Le Mans class champions Jota Sport, who retain Simon Dolan and Oliver Turvey from last year's winning lineup, and bring in 21-year-old GP2 Series standout Mitch Evans for a second consecutive race - the trio took LMP2 class victory at Spa two weeks ago.

    bruni fisico vilander.jpg

    The #51 AF Corse Ferrari lineup of Gianmaria Bruni, Toni Vilander, and Giancarlo Fisichella look for back-to-back victories at Le Mans in the GTE Pro category, but to do so they will have to fight back against an Aston Martin Racing squad that includes last year's GTE Am class winning #95 entry, affectionately nicknamed the Dane Train, and the class-winning entry at Spa, the #99 co-driven by Alex MacDowall, Richie Stanaway, and sim racing legend Fernando Rees. Porsche Team Manthey and Corvette Racing will also be major contenders as they were one year ago.

    While in the GTE-Am division, the return of the Viper and Corvette marques to the class after a year's absence, another entry from actor-driver Patrick Dempsey and his Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche 911, and the lightning start for Aston Martin Racing will be the main draws. The trio of Pedro Lamy, Mathias Lauda, and Paul Dalla Lana are undefeated in 2015 in the #98 Vantage V8 GTE.

    Who will you be supporting in this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans? Discuss it in the comments below, and for more Le Mans discussion, visit our WEC sub-forum!

    Image Credit: Red Bull Media House, Toyota Hybrid Racing, NISMO, Ferrari
    • Like Like x 9
  2. Dan Allen

    Dan Allen
    I am the Pastor Maldonado of RaceDepartment.

    Wanna see both Audi & Porsche do well to be honest, I think it'll be a great battle.
  3. I still find it remarkable that the GT Academy graduates have carved out a successful racing career.

    I was already really excited about the NISMO's participation, but can't wait to see how these boys perform in the step up to LMP1.
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 2
  4. airutonpurosuto8912


    I'll support Toyota!
  5. Supporting Porsche! And I'll be at the fence watching. It's going to be great!
  6. Torcano

    #21 MPB Clan Premium Member

    My body is getting ready for a 24 hour sprint race between Audi and Toyota. xD
    • Like Like x 1
  7. R.J. O'Connell

    R.J. O'Connell
    Commentator/Contributor Staff Premium Member

    My heart has been for Nissan. My head says it's gonna be Audi.
  8. Ross Balfour

    Ross Balfour
    #99 | Roaring Pipes Maniacs

    My favourite F1 driver at the moment Nico Hulkenberg, so I want him to win
    My favourite F1 driver of the last 5 years is Mark Webber, so I want him to win
    NISMO are supporting simracers to drive in LMP1 at le Mans, so I want them to win.

    I choose Audi.
    • Haha Haha x 6
  9. Jimlaad43

    Nice apex, I'll take it! Premium Member

    Come on Toyota!
  10. Sunny Sky Speed

    Sunny Sky Speed
    Livery Designer Premium Member

    I want to reward the most innovative team with my best of luck and a win at Le Mans 24H:
    come on Nismo!!
  11. H34d5h07

    No money, no team racing.

    I couldn't care less about the Prototypes. But as a GT fanboy, I am torn between Corvette and Porsche. With Aston Martin closing in. But for now, I say Corvette.
  12. Frederic Schornstein

    Frederic Schornstein
    TXL Racing Premium Member

    Still disappointed, that Nissan will most likely run with 2MJ, so they wont have the required pace and I dont understand why Toyota only brings two cars instead of three like all other LMP1 manufracturers (incl. Nissan)! Last year they definetely had the pace to win, but this year they seem to be in no mans land.

    Looking at the pace Porsche should be able to win it, but their strategy in the last two races was soooo bad it was unbeliveable. So with the recent updates I think Audi will have the best chance, but I hope for some change on the top at LeMans :D
  13. Nick Heidfeld and Nic Prost in the same car.....Bejing 2014 anyone?
    • Haha Haha x 1
  14. But I want Heidfeld, Webber and Hulk to do well
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. Τhey were in the same car a week after their crash in Bejing actually, and for quite a long time before that as well ;)
    • Beer Beer x 1
  16. Didn't know that... I only started watching non-f1 motorsports since formula e started
  17. Arne Dopudja

    Arne Dopudja
    Leader of the infamous Chevy Gang.

    My heart belongs to Porsche, I would like to see the Nissan win, common sense tells me Audi, so Toyota will probably win.
    • Haha Haha x 1
  18. Yannick Van Broeck

    Yannick Van Broeck
    Premium Member

    My guess is a Porsche will win. Seeing as how fast they are in a straight line compared to Audi and Toyota. I'm not even going to count in Nissan, their car is a disaster.
  19. Nah, they'll screw something up (or something/someone screws them over) again as usual. They might be winning 6 hour races, but doing 4 times as much is another story.

    Well, yeah. It's their first year and they're beginning with Le Mans :D It's obvious they're going to have problems. Look at Toyota in 2012 - two cars, two DNFs. Next year - 2nd and 4th.
    Give them time. The guys at Nissan know how to build a race car.
  20. Yannick Van Broeck

    Yannick Van Broeck
    Premium Member

    True, the guys over at Nissan certainly know how to build a great car. The Skyline and the GTR are a prime example of crafty engineering.

    The problem I'm having with their LMP1 is that their engine is in the front of the car and not the back. The people over at Audi, Porsche and Toyota aren't stupid either; there's a reason why that engine is in the back of the car. Nissan has thrown so much money against this project that it's too late for them to turn back now so we'll have to wait and see how it's going to work out at Le Mans.

    I'm happy to be proven wrong though, if they do end up with great pace I'll be the first to say I was wrong :)