After finishing on a high with 20 cars back in January, the Asian Le Mans Series is returning next weekend with 30 cars in Zhuhai to kick off the 2016-2017 season.
The weekend of the 29-30th of October will see 30 cars take to the track, with 4 LMP2, 10 LMP3, 1 CN and 15 GT cars thundering around the Zhuhai International Circuit. Twelve different nationalities of teams are joining us for this first event, with 15 Asian teams and 7 European teams taking part.
Since the last announcement with the season entries, we can add Tockwith Motorsports (GBR) who have entered for the full season with a Ligier JSP3. We also have a race by race addition in the GT Class with Chinese team TianShi Racing Team bringing an Audi R8 Ultra GT3 to Zhuhai.
At the front of the field, the LMP2 class will see two Ligier JS P2 entered by Algarve Pro Racing go head to head with the Oreca 03R cars entered by Jackie Chan DC Racing and last year’s Asian LMS champions, Race Performance.
The LMP3 class has grown since last season and sees three different brands competing – PRT Racing and Aylezo Ecotint Racing are entering the Ginetta LMP3, with ARC Bratislava fielding two. The Ligier JSP3 will be run by last season’s returning champions Jackie Chan DC Racing, along with FRD Racing Team, Tockwith Motorsports, G-Print by Triple 1 Racing and Wineurasia who are also running the car. PS Racing is currently the only team entering an ADESS 03.
PS Racing have also entered a car in the CN class, running the Ligier JS53 once more after having had a good run in the Asian Le Mans Sprint Cup over the summer.
The GT field will see 7 different brands making up the 15 cars in the class –
The most popular car in the GT category this season looks to be the Ferrari 488 GT3, with DH Racing entering two, and Team BBT, Spirit of Race and Clearwater Racing fielding one each.
Chinese team Absolute Racing are entering an Audi R8 GT3 and a Bentley GT3; Asian LMS regular Team AAI will be there with three cars – a BMW M6 GT3, a McLaren 650 GT3 and an AMG GT3; Malaysian team OD Racing are also fielding a McLaren 650 GT3.
There will be two Lamborghini Huracan GT3 joining as well, with one entered by Italians VS Racing and one by Chinese team FFF Racing by ACM. Other Asian LMS regulars KCMG are joining us in an Audi R8 LMS GT3, and lastly, TianShi Racing Team are entering as a race by race entry with an Audi R8 Ultra GT3.
Three full season entered cars will only join the field after Zhuhai. SPV Racing and their Ligier JS P3, as well as Team AAI’s 4th car, their second McLaren 650 GT3, will join us from the second round in Fuji, wheras Team NZ will be joining us with their Porsche 997 Cup in the GT Cup category for the last two rounds at least.
The weekend starts with two free practice sessions on Saturday, followed by two 15-minute qualifying sessions, one for the LMP2, LMP3 and CN, and one for the GT cars in the late afternoon. The Sunday will see the first 4-hour race of the season start at 13:00.
Whoever wins in their category will start their quest to take the class titles and win their places in next year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans!
Credits : Photos and content courtesy of Asian Le Mans endurance management