It’s the home stretch now for the season for the Oreca #28 driven by Paul Lafargue, Paul-Loup Chatin and Memo Rojas, and for the Ligier #27 driven by Patrice Lafargue, Stéphane Adler and William Cavailhes. The two IDEC SPORT teams of drivers will be doing their utmost to shine in the Portimão 4-Hour Race. #28 will be attempting to grab the title of European champion, in spite of the lead that G-Drive has of 13 points.
After five races in the 2019 European Le Mans Series, IDEC SPORT has shown their ability and know-how and is now up with the best teams, as they tackle the Portimão 4-Hour Race in Portugal. With just one meeting left, only 13 points separate last year’s champions from Patrice Lafargue’s team. IDEC SPORT iis twelve points ahead of their nearest rival. The eight points saved thanks to the exceptional work done by the whole team in the Spa 4-Hour event will be very important as the points are counted at the end of the season.
You may remember that the Oreca #28 was a write-off in Belgium after coming off the track in the Raidillon bend in Belgium. The team found a chassis in Germany from another team and spent Friday and Saturday night preparing the new car, which was only set up on the grid with a few minutes to go to the start.
“After the race in Spa, we took apart the car that SPS had lent us and put all their pieces back together before returning the chassis,” explained Frédéric Ducastel, the team’s boss. “We got the production of a new car underway at Oreca. Two of our technicians spent a fortnight working on the car in the South of France. We just ran her in on the Castellet circuit with Nico Minassian driving. During that checking process, we made sure there wasn’t any damage or leaks and all the systems were working as well as the sensors. The car was not adjusted, but simply given a check up in all the various modes, including normal running, using the limiter, the full course yellow system and the engine maps, etc,” explained Frédéric Ducastel. Part of the team headed off to Portugal from Le Castellet.
This will be another challenge for IDEC SPORT to get up with the frontrunners, as 39 cars are competing, including 18 LMP2s. As well as the two 90-minute trial sessions (25/26th October), IDEC SPORT will drive around the 4.684 km circuit on Wednesday 23rd October during some private trials.
Five different teams won pole position in the first five events. IDEC SPORT will be attempting to be the only team to do that twice in 2019 (after their position in Barcelona). Paul-Loup Chatin will set off for the 10-minute qualifier on Saturday 26th October at 1620hrs.
The Portimão 4-Hour Race will take place on Sunday 27th October with the start at 12.30.