Larbre Competition has applied to ACO for an entry of two Ligier JS P3s in the Michelin Le Mans Cup for 2018. The team has also applied for a singler car entry for a Ligier JS P217 for the Le Mans 24 Hours.
Jack Leconte’s Larbre Competition team has been linked with Corvette, and the potential of a works backed GTE program for WEC. Unfortunately that program hasn’t materialised.
But after missing the majority of 2017, Larbre are back full time for 2018. The French team will run the full Michelin Le Mans Cup season, including the two Road to Le Mans support races during the Le Mans 24 Hours weekend.
Fernando Rees is the only driver confirmed so far, and is currently only listed as driving the Ligier JS P217 for the Le Mans 24 Hours.
“Choosing Ligier was obvious, as it allows us to compete in two classes, and work with Onroak Automotive again.” said Jack Leconte. “We are delighted to welcome Fernando back to the team. Last year at Le Mans he set pole position in the LM GTE-Am and will be a great asset to get our Ligier JS P217 to the front of the pack.”
From a personal point of view, it’s sad that we won’t see the Corvette back in ELMS or WEC this year. Whilst it wasn’t quite a works effort, it was one of my favourite cars on the entire grid. On a purely speculative note, wouldn’t it be nice if that car was in the hands of Keating Motorsport for the Le Mans 24 Hours? We can dream…
The elephant in the room with the Larbre announcement is of course the Le Mans entry. It’s all very good announcing a Le Mans entry, the car you’re entering and even a driver at this early stage. But 2018 isn’t looking that simple. We’re already expecting the grid to be oversubscribed, and that some ELMS P2 teams will find themselves disappointed.
If ELMS LMP2 teams are going to struggle to get on the grid, then what chance does a Michelin Le Mans Cup team? It would be a shame to lose Larbre from Le Mans, but currently it looks like that is what will happen.