Mat Fernandez has been taking a close look at the just-published 2018 ACO Sporting and Technical Regulations.
Here’s the first of a short series covering the major changes with this first part looking at changes for the Le Mans 24 Hours and LMP2 performance:
Le Mans 24 Hours Test Day
The Test Day will be held on the 3rd of June on the full Le Mans 24 Hours Circuit as usual, this the first time that the drivers and teams will get to see and experience the circuit with its newly resurfaced sections and the re-profiled element in the Porsche Curves with the new run-off zone.
The 2018 regulations permit up to 5 drivers to be nominated per car and for an individual driver to be nominated in several cars.
The regulations also permit the ACO to accept one or more additional cars “as part of experiments related to the event or the FIA World Endurance Championship”.
Platinum drivers remain exempt from having to take part in the Test Day.
Le Mans 24 Hours Entry
70 cars will be selected (60 regular cars + 10 reserves or 59+1 Garage 56+10 reserves)
The entry (and reserve list) will be announced on Feb 9 – One driver per car to be designated.
Closing date for filing an entry is February 5th, final driver line-ups to be communicated at the latest on May 10th.
There has been a significant change in the LMP2 regulations that makes it clear that if data from the LMP2 contenders (provided to ensure as level a performance playing field as possible between the available chassis) proves to be incorrect then a “minimum stop and go penalty of five minutes to be given by officials before, during or after the race.”
Effectively this aligns the regulatory package for LMP2 with the GTE Pro rule book – though the ACO is likely to deny that the combination of ‘Joker’ changes for the Multimatic, Ligier and Dallara chassis, and the subsequent testing of the results and analysis of data amount to ‘Balance of Performance’. This is a one-shot re-balancing, rather than the ongoing processes that apply to the GTE cars.