24h Le Mans
27/06/2019 - 12:01

The 2019 24 Hours of Le Mans for SMP Racing (LMP1)

43 teams (fielding 61 cars) competed in the 87th 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Super Finale of the FIA WEC 2018-19 World Endurance Championship. There were winners, of course, but also mechanical glitches, track incidents and early retirements. Joy for some, disappointment for others... Here’s a summary of the 24 Hours of Le Mans for the SMP Racing team, which ran in the LMP1 class.
The 2019 24 Hours of Le Mans for SMP Racing (LMP1)

Team: SMP Racing

Class: LMP1

Car: #11 BR Engineering BR1-AER

Drivers:

  • Mikhail Aleshin (5th participation)
  • Vitaly Petrov (5th participation)
  • Stoffel Vandoorne (1st participation)

Former McLaren F1 driver Stoffel Vandoorne qualified the BR Engineering BR1-AER in fifth position with a time of 3:16.665 clocked during the third session. In the wake of a steady and consistent race, the trio Aleshin/Petrov/Vandoorne claimed the third step on the podium and was the top private team in the overall classification. "For my first experience here, reaching the podium is outstanding. The race was challenging, we kept a good pace when we needed to. We were able to avoid problems, and I'd like to come back to go after the overall win," said Stoffel Vandoorne after the race.

Car: #17 BR Engineering BR1-AER

Drivers:

  • Stéphane Sarrazin (18th participation)
  • Egor Orudzhev (3rd participation)
  • Sergey Sirotkin (2nd participation)

The #17 BR Engineering BR1-AER qualified in third position (behind TOYOTA GAZOO Racing's two Toyota TS050 Hybrids) with a time of 3:16.159 clocked by Egor Orudzhev during the third session. As the car was in third position overall after 10 hours of racing, Orudzhev left the track at the Porsche curves on Sunday at 01:22. "The damage to the car was so significant that it probably wouldn't have restarted. Naturally, I wanted to get back on the track and return to the garage," admitted the Russian driver.  

PHOTO: LE MANS (SARTHE, FRANCE), CIRCUIT DES 24 HEURES DU MANS, THURSDAY 13 JUNE 2019, QUALIFYING. The #11 BR Engineering BR1-AER of Russian team SMP Racing shared by Mikhail Aleshin, Vitaly Petrov and Stoffel Vandoorne.