Spa Francorchamps all set for ELMS and Le Mans Cup this weekend

Tuesday, September 19, 2023


Lots of series are now getting to the end of the season with both the European Le Mans Series and supporting Michelin Le Mans Cup Series are perhaps the exceptions.

Having started in Barcelona, then across to Paul Ricard and then back to Aragon last time out, the forty-two entries of the ELMS and thirty-nine cars of the Le Mans Cup Series will both be back in action this weekend from the infamous Spa Francorchamps circuit in Belgium.

With this weekends round and then two back to back rounds still to come in Portugal, the three Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE’s of the ELMS are sadly effectively out of championship contention (although mathematically possible) but for the sole Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT3 within the Le Mans Cup, they certainly still has everything to race for!

No changes aboard the three Vantage GTE runners this weekend as the venerable platform sadly counts down to its last visit to Spa as a mainstream chassis but with its replacement presently under test this week somewhere in Spain, there are still good times to look forward to.

John Hartshorne, Jonny Adam and Ben Tuck lead the AMR trio within the GTE Champiosnhip, presently standing in twelfth place in their #95 TF Sport prepared car having failed to score for the first time this season last time in the heat of Aragon. Much cooler and perhaps even wet conditions in Belgium across the weekend will certainly help to spice everything up within the LMP2, LMP3 and GTE grid.

The #72 TF Sport Aston Martin GTE of Max and Arnold Robin with Valentin Hasse Clot alongside stand below them in P14 having endured a very difficult start to their short GTE career this season, something that started with a first lap crash and elimination in Barcelona. Since then, something could have been on for them at Paul Ricard before late contact put that hope to bed before also struggling in the heat of Aragon.

Finally, there is the #44 GMB Motorsport AMR of Jens Moller, Gustav Birch and Nicki Thiim – a team who have probably suffered the most with both younger and novice drivers suffering with incident and accident along the way both in this series and at Le Mans itself.

They will come into this round with certainly nothing to lose and with a Pro driver already seat ready after his secretive two-day test with the factory team as they continue to develop this evolution of the Vantage platform in time for next season.

The more ‘spirited’ news comes with the #10 Racing Spirit of Leman Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT3 of Arnold Robin and Valentin Hasse Clot as the French duo maintained a slender lead at the top of the GT3 Drivers Champiosnhip after they managed to secure a P3 in class finish at Aragon.

With two lower place finishes over the course of the Road to Le Mans races in June blighting their otherwise podium-based record, the remaining races at both Spa and Portimao will need to be on their best form if they are to stop the #86 Porsche and #51 Ferrari from snatching that top prize from them at the death.

The circuit of Spa Francorchamps can be difficult enough for some at the best of times so the autumnal weather within the Ardennes will be pivotable to the success (or failure) for both grids going into race day on Saturday for the Le Mans Cup and Sunday for the ELMS.

Photo credits – Teams / Series / A Lofthouse
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Technorati
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • Google
  • Reddit
  • Sphinn
  • Propeller
  • Slashdot
  • Netvibes