With under a week to go until we hear confirmation of the entry lists for the Le Mans 24 Hours, FIA WEC and ELMS news is filtering through of programmes that are coming together, and some of those that aren’t.
One team name that isn’t going to on any of those lists for the full 2017 season is that of 2011 Le Mans LMP2 winners and 2011 and 2015 ELMS Champions Greaves Motorsport, Tim Greaves confirming to DSC today that for the first time in a decade the team will not be racing in a full-season campaign.
The transition to the new for 2017 LMP2 category is at the hub of the issue as Tim explained:
“The cost of buying a new car, including all the testing is approximately €800k plus spares with an additional €1.75m in running costs for a sensible programme. Beyond that there is the question of which will be the best (chassis) manufacturer to partner with. We plan to be back when the time is right”
Both of those questions have been very much to the fore in conversations with a large proportion of the teams set to be seen on track, and others that won’t. With a four year homologation period before a performance upgrade is permitted the choice of chassis between the Dallara, Ligier (below), Oreca and Riley Multimatic options is a particularly important one both in terms of ultimate performance, and the available customer support.
The vexed question of budgets is also very much to the fore with more than one significant player offering an opinion that there may be some nasty shocks to come for some teams offering cut-price deal for the 2017 season.
Many Greaves crew members meanwhile are already working with other teams, several at Daytona with a variety of teams.
For Greaves in 2017 the race team say they will be entering some races on a race by race basis and meanwhile the company name will continue to be seen in paddocks around the world throughout the year with the sister Greaves 3D Engineering outfit continuing to expand – supplying teams in DTM, FIA WEC, ELMS, Aussie GT, top flight Formula series, Blancpain GT etc.