With 18 prototypes on the starting line, LMP2 will be the largest class. The vast majority of last year’s teams are back this season. 2019 champion IDEC Sport will be defending its title with the Oreca 07-Gibson. Paul Lafargue is the first driver to be confirmed at the wheel of the car. Runner-up last year, Russian team G-DRIVE Racing will be taking another shot at the title with the new Aurus 01-Gibson in the hands of Roman Rusinov. Among the favourites in the top class are DragonSpeed (#21 Oreca 07-Gibson), United Autosports with two Oreca 07-Gibsons, Inter Europol Competition with two Ligier JS P217-Gibsons, Panis Racing (#31 Oreca 07-Gibson) and Thunderhead Carlin Racing with the only Dallara P217-Gibson on the grid. Moving up to LMP2 from LMP3, French team Ultimate fields an entry with Jean-Baptiste Lahaye as leading driver. Another newcomer, Richard Mille Racing Team is entering an Oreca 07-Gibson with former IndyCar driver and IMSA GTD vice-champion Katherine Legge.
The new season hails a new generation of LMP3s with the Ligier JS P320 and the Duqueine M30-D08 making their début on the international scene. There are 13 entries in this class. Several LMP2 teams are also running LMP3 programmes, namely Inter Europol Competition (Ligier), IDEC Sport (Ligier) and United Autosports (Ligier). Nielsen Racing, DKR Engineering, 360 Racing, Realteam Racing, Graff and RLR MSport will all be at the start with a car each.
The LMGTE field will comprise nine cars: seven Ferraris and two Porsches. Proton Competition and Dempsey Proton Racing are each entering a 911 RSR. Ferrari will be represented by AF Corse, JMW Motorsport, Spirit Of Race, Kessel Racing and Iron Lynx, a new Italian team with Claudio Schiavoni and Manuela Gostner each at the wheel of a 488 GTE EVO – #60 and #83 respectively.
FIA WEC and ELMS General Manager Gérard Neveu commented: “We are delighted to see such a fantastic field of forty cars this year. LMP2 continues to attract a host of high level competitors. LMP3 boasts two second generation cars by Ligier and Duqueine in an impressive line-up. And Porsche and Ferrari will no doubt deliver a spectacular show in LMGTE. ELMS is six 4-hour races at the best tracks in Europe and gets better and better each year. Join us on 5 April in Barcelona to kick-off another exciting season.”
A reminder of the 2020 European Le Mans Series schedule:
Practice sessions in Barcelona – 30-31 March
4 Hours of Barcelona – 3-4-5 April
4 Hours of Monza – 8-9-10 May
4 Hours of Le Castellet – 17-18-19 July
4 Hours of Silverstone – 18-19-20 September
4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps – 18-19-20 September
4 Hours of Portimao – 16-17-18 October
Winners of the European Le Mans Series are awarded an invitation to the next 24 Hours of Le Mans. The criteria are as follows:
Field of 6 to 11: an invitation for the class winner
Field of 12 to 17: an invitation for the class winner and the runner-up
Field of 18 to 23: an invitation for the class winner and second and third places.
The winner of LMP3 is awarded an invitation to the next 24 Hours of Le Mans
Field of 4 to 7: an invitation for the class winner
Field of 8 to 11: an invitation for the class winner and the runner-up
Field of 12 to 15: an invitation for the class winner and second and third places.
See the European Le Mans Series website for details.