Le Mans Series

Le Mans Series

Aston Martin and their V12 Zagato Racer better be on top of their game when it comes to this year’s 24-hours of Nürburgring. Lexus , in cooperation with Gazoo Racing, will be entering the race with a pretty impressive LF-A supercar that should give fellow racers a run for their money.

During its latest testing, the Lexus LFA by Gazoo started off from position 12 and finished the race in fifth place with an average speed of 161.139 km/h. Its fastest lap was completed with an average speed of 170.540 km/h, corresponding to a lap time of 8:34.416 for the combination of the shortened GP-track and the Nordschleife of the Nürburgring. This is an impressive result considering that, at a previous test session, the car suffered a stroke of bad luck another car crashed into it when the LFA driver, Ishiura, was entering Turn 1. This resulted in a severely damaged rear righthand section, retiring the vehicle from the race.

Gazoo Racing has been working with the Lexus LFA for the past three years, even before the street version of the vehicle went on sale in 2010. During that time, Gazoo has been revising the vehicle to obtain maximum results on the track. These revisions include tuning the vehicle’s underbody with carbon fiber reinforced plastic, as well as switching out its tires for Bridgestone racing tires, size 330/40R18. Gazoo also took the liberty of adding a few aerodynamic parts to complete the look and feel of the racer. Under the hood, we’ll find the same 4805 cc V10 engine with over 560 HP coursing through its automotive veins.

Make sure you check out the Lexus LFA at the ADAC 24 hour race on June 25, 2011, but for now, hit the jump to see a video of Hiroaki Ishiura, one of three professional drivers who will be piloting the LFA on the day of the race, as he gets through some of the vehicle’s testing.

Video after the jump.

You know the world is coming into electric vehicles when there’s a company out there whose name spells it out for everyone. GreenGT has been around for a few years bringing us electric vehicles such as the 2009 GreenGT Sprint, the 2010 Citroën Servile, and the 2011 GreenGT 300. Its last project was the Green GT Electric Race Car Concept and we now hear that it has been whipped into a production version and invited to compete as an experimental car at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2012.

The GreenGT LMPH2 will incorporate all of the safety features found in the company’s previous models and will be built on an LMP chassis. It will be fueled by 12 kg of hydrogen in 700 bar high-pressure tanks which are on board the vehicle. This hydrogen will be fed into a fuel cell, and when combined with oxygen, will produce electricity to run the racer. The only emissions escaping it will be steam so the LMPH2 will be fully carbon neutral.

GreenGT will be presenting the first LMPH2 in the fall of 2011 to undergo testing before the big year ahead of them. This first model will feature a 100kW (134 HP) fuel cell that will then be followed with a 300kW (402 HP) fuel cell.

Hit the jump to watch veteran driver, Christian Pescatori, take a couple of laps in the GreenGT prototype. Pescatori will be driving the GreenGT racer throughout its developmental stages.

Source: GreenGT

As a race car driver, nothing is scarier than crashing into a barrier, sending your car airborne, seemingly helpless to fight the laws of physics that take over. Ultimately, as a driver, all you can do is brace for the impact, and pray that the ensuing damage is about as minimal as it could possibly be.

During the first part of Le Mans, Audi driver, Allan McNish, was involved in a horrific accident after the Scotsman accidentally bumped his R18 TDI into a Ferrari 458 Italia . The collision caused the R18 TDI to barrel into the sand trap, crashing the barrier and sending just about every piece of the race car flying everywhere, including near a group of reporters who probably didn’t find it thrilling to see a debris of metal, carbon fiber, and tires raining down on them.

The only positive outcome from this accident - and given the circumstances, it was the best anyone could have hoped for - was that no one, including McNish, was injured from the spectacular, albeit horrific crash.

Just goes to show just how thin the line is in auto racing. One second, you’re posting flying lap after flying lap and before you know it, your race car is doing an airborne cartwheel while you sit helpless behind the wheel praying for the best outcome possible.

Source: You Tube

We’ve seen some outstanding safety cars this year ranging from Mercedes , Porsche , and BMW , but this latest safety car seems to have come to fruition straight from our dreams. Patrolling the 2011 24 Hours of Le Mans on June 11–12, 2011 at the Circuit de la Sarthe, Le Mans, France will be a beautiful red Audi R8 . Guess the R18 race car won’t be the only Audi to star at this event.

The Audi R8 Safety Car will feature the same V10 engine found in the standard model that will deliver 525 HP and can hit a top speed of 197 mph. Some may wonder why a car of this caliber would even need to be patrolling the race instead of starring in it, but there needs to be at least one powerful and speedy model keeping everything in line.

Make sure you keep your eyes open during this weekend’s 24 Hours of Lemans to catch a glimpse of this spectacular safety car!

Source: Audi

You know Le Mans season is fast approaching when teams set to compete in the legendary race are one by one introducing their 2011 racers to the public. One team that’s scheduled to participate in the 24-hour endurance race is Flying Lizard and today, the team officially unveiled a special edition livery for the No. 80 and No. 81 Flying Lizard Porsche 911 GT3 RSR race cars that will compete in Le Mans. The livery, which was created by California-based artist Troy Lee, celebrates the rich and esteemed history of Porsche at Le Mans, highlighted by the 28 drivers that have won the world-famous endurance race while driving a Porsche .

Although the design is similar for both cars, they sport different color schemes - candy metallic orange for the No. 80 and candy metallic blue for the No. 81 - with the primary colors providing backdrop for the driver names and flags that weave throughout the design of the race car.

The 2011 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR is powered by a 4.0-liter, six-cylinder boxer engine mated to a six-speed gearbox, producing an output of 455 horsepower at 7,800 rpm and a peak of 332 lb/ft of torque.

Continued after the jump.

This is the one and only factory low-drag lightweightJaguar E-Type and is a vehicle that should have been laid to rest a long time ago. In fact, the Jaguar was thought to be dead until Peter Neumark of Classic Motors Cars breathed new life into the last racing car ever built at Jaguar’s factory.

Only twelve lightweight E-types were built by Jaguar’s competition department back in 1963, but only one returned to undergo preparatory work for the LeMans race later that year. Malcolm Sayer designed the vehicle to have a special low drag body that would be coupled to a highly modified engine. This combination was set to take LeMans by storm and lead driver, Peter Lindner, to victory. Unfortunately, while on the Montlhery circuit, something went terribly wrong causing a crash that would end up killing Peter Lindner and destroying the Jaguar E-type. Sayer himself said that the vehicle could not be repaired and that opinion was echoed in the 1970s when a second survey confirmed the vehicle’s fate.

Fast forward to 2007 when Peter Neumark entered the scene. Determined to revive the crumpled E-Type, Neumark set out to make history with one of the most complex restorations to ever take place in the world.

Hit the jump to see what dedication, passion, and 7,000 hours of hard work can accomplish.

Source: Jaguar

Typically, a Safety Car is used to keep all of the race cars participating in the event SAFE - hence the name -, but this past weekend Audi ’s Safety Car did everything but the one task it was designed to do. At the start of the 2011 LMS season at Le Castellet, the Audi Safety Car was still on the track when the green light appeared and the racers began their competitive journey.

As angry as some may have been for the not-so-speedy Safety Car and the unfortunate pileup that ensued, Audi isn’t actually to blame. The organizers opted for an additional parade lap for the Audi, but failed to communicate this decision to all of the teams. The result was a clash and bang of metal.

Some of the vehicles destroyed were the Porsche GT3 RSR models from teams like Felbermayr-Proton, ProSpeed, and Imsa. Porsche works driver, Richard Leitz, commented by saying, "After the formation lap, the lights were already green, but because of the packed field it wasn’t possible to register that the safety car hadn’t yet left the track. Suddenly I was torpedoed from the left and pushed into the wall. I had no chance to avoid the accident

We would say enjoy the video, but no one could seriously do so considering its content. We’re just wondering who will have to pay for all the damages?

Audi R18 TDI Testing at Sebring from QuattroWorld.com on Vimeo.

While all eyes were at Sebring last weekend for the 12 Hours of Sebring endurance race to mark the opening of the 2011 ALMS season, German automaker, Audi , went largely unnoticed as it completed a couple of testing runs for its new LMP1 racer, the R18 .

The R18’s debut is still a month away at the 6-hour Spa-Francorchamps endurance race on May 7, 2011, but with precious time remaining before its debut, the engineers over at Audi worked double hard last weekend to ensure that the car’s aerodynamics and reliability were up to par with its predecessor, the R15 .

Fortunately, Audi was kind of enough to post a couple of videos of the Sebring testing, complete with action shots of their LMP1 racer run roughshod on the race track. On top of the two-minute R18 action-fest, there’s also another video featuring no less than Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, the brand’s motorsport head, giving us the low-down behind the car, including the decision to go for an all-new 3.7-liter V6 diesel engine with the R18.

Check out the video of Dr. Ullrich’s interview after the jump.

Are you ready to have your 2011-racing itch finally scratched? With the 2011 Formula One season getting delayed by political unrest in Bahrain, the racing community turns its attention to the opening of the 2011 American Le Mans racing season this weekend with one of the most iconic endurance races in the world, the 12 Hours of Sebring.

Always one of the most eagerly anticipated races of the year, the 12 Hours of Sebring kicks off the 2011 ALMS season in grand fashion with the reigning champs from Peugeot Sport Total ready to defend their 2010 title against a field of heavyweight contenders, including headlined perennial contender, Audi , and last year’s runner-up, Aston Martin .

This year, Peugeot will be bringing the new Peugeot 908 HDi FAP to compete against the likes of the Audi R15+TDI and the Aston Martin Lola B08.

In addition to the top-of-the-field LMP1 class, the 2011 12 Hours of Sebring will also feature races from a number of different classes, including the new LMPC class, led by PR1 Mathiasen M/Sport’s Oreca FLM09, and the always-competitive GT class, which has a formidable entrant in the form of the recently-revealed Risi Competizione’s new Ferrari 458 GTC .

To keep you updated with all of the cars scheduled to participate in all of the weekend’s races, the folks over at SpotterGuides.com have provided everything you need to know about each and every car that will see the green light this weekend. Keep tabs on some of the favorites and be on the look-out for dark horses, because this weekend’s 12 Hours of Sebring endurance race is expected to be one for the books.

If you’re going to keep tabs on all the action from the confines of your own home, you can watch the race in its entirety online on ESPN3.com, or if you have an Xbox, you can catch the action through live streaming. If you miss out on watching the race live, ABC will have a recap from 12:30 – 2:00 pm EST with ESPN2 airing the same recap show next Tuesday, March 22, 2011.

About a month ago, Peugeot came out and introduced their 2011 race car, the new 908 HDi FAP LMP1 race car.

Turns out, the French automaker may have more than one race car that’s set to compete in one of the most important races of the calendar year. Much to our surprise, the French automaker came to the Geneva Motor Show and unveiled another version of their new LMP1 bad boys, the 908 HYbrid4 LMP1 racer.

Dressed in white and black livery, the 908 HYbrid4 comes with the same powerplant as the 908 HDi FAP, except that on top of the 3.7-liter V8 engine, the former will also be carrying a hybrid system that comes with an added ’assist power’ of 80 horsepower.

After spending some quality time in Geneva, the French automaker will be bringing the 908 HYbrid4 out on the test track to further work out the kinks in time for the official pre-Le Mans 24 Hours test day on April 24th, 2011.

The work is far from over for the folks over at Peugeot so we’ll just have to wait and see how the team progresses with the testing and development of their newly revealed 908 HYbrid4 racer.

Details on the Peugeot 908 HYbrid4 LMP1 Racecar after the jump.

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