Racing Returns To Red Bull Ring: Watch ELMS Qualifying LIVE
The European Le Mans Series resumes this weekend at the picturesque Red Bull Ring in Austria for round three of the six-race series.
Thirty nine cars from twenty eight teams and 99 drivers representing 21 different nations from around the globe will line up for the race including 13 of the leading class LMP2 cars.
Championship leaders G-Drive Racing will be looking to extend their 10-point advantage over their rivals with Léo Roussel and Memos Rojas joined by the highly experienced Nicolas Minassian, the French driver replacing Ryo Hirakawa in Austria as the Japanese driver has other commitments that weekend.
Silverstone race winners United Autosports are currently second behind the Russian team on 33 points, with the all Danish team at High Class Racing just three points behind them and keen to make it three podium finishes in a row in their ELMS debut season.
The grid has been boosted by one car as former ELMS championship winning team SMP Racing will make its 2017 ELMS debut in Austria after the team competed at the 24 Hours of Le Mans last month with the brand new Dallara P217.
Australian driver James Allen will return with the GRAFF team in a Oreca 07 that he shares with Richard Bradley and Gustavo Yacaman.
The rapidly growing LMP3 class will once again feature the largest grid with 17 cars due to race in Austria, and with just 7 points separating the top five cars, the championship race couldn’t be closer.
The no17 Ultimate Ligier-Nissan is the current championship leaders with two podium finishes in Silverstone and Monza for Jean-Baptiste Lahaye, Matthieu Lahaye and François Heriau. The all French team, currently on 33 points, have a five point advantage over the no18 M.Racing-YMR Ligier and the no3 United Autosports Ligier.
Silverstone race winners Sean Rayhall and John Falb are in fourth place on 27 points, while the no19 M.Racing-YMR Norma M30, which won spectacularly in Monza in May, is on 26 points with Yann Ehrlacher returning to join Monza race winner Erwin Creed in Austria.
Melbourne driver Ricky Capo will race for the Eurointernational team, Capo showed great pace at Le Mans and comes off of a win at Monza for the M.Racing YMR team and he’ll be looking to further establish a full time place in top level European Sports Car racing.
The LMP3 grid will also feature the sole Austrian entry with the no9 AT Racing Ligier of father and son duo Alexander Talkanitsa senior and junior and Italian Maurizio Mediani hoping to bring home a win for the local team.
In GTE eyes will be on the no66 JMW Motorsport Ferrari as the British team travel to the Red Bull Ring as race winners in Monza last time out and, more importantly, as the 2017 LMGTE 24 Hours of Le Mans winners. Regular driver and Le Mans winner Rob Smith is rejoined Jody Fannin and Jonny Cocker in Austria.
The LMGTE grid will feature another 2017 24 Hours of Le Mans champion with Darren Turner rejoining Andrew Howard and Ross Gunn in the Beechdean AMR Aston Marttin after winning the LMGTE Pro class at Le Mans for the Aston Martin Racing works team.
Silverstone race winner TF Sport holds a 9-point advantage over the JMW Motorsport crew with Salih Yoluc, Euan Hankey and Nicki Thiim currently on 44 points in the no90 Aston Martin Vantage. The no99 Beechdean AMR Aston Martin has scored two podium finishes in the first two races and is currently lying in third on 30 points, just 2 points ahead of the no77 Proton Competition Porsche 911.
Qualifying for Sunday’s race is at 9:00PM Australian Eastern Time and you can catch all the action right here on the In Pit Lane.COM