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Autosport 24/09/20

The UK’s ‘must-read’ motorsport magazine AUTOSPORT is revered by fans and industry personnel alike as the ultimate source of motorsport news and analysis. The magazine’s expert editorial covers all aspects of the sport, from major international series such as Formula 1, Sports Car racing and the World Rally Championship, to the less glamorous but hugely important grassroots events in UK club motorsport

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in this issue

1 min.
welcome return of endurance racing’s greatest event

The 2020 Le Mans 24 Hours probably won’t be recalled as one of the event’s classic editions but, in such a tumultuous year, it was great to see the world’s greatest sportscar race taking place for the 88th time. And, as ever, there was plenty of drama at the Circuit de la Sarthe. Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez must be wondering what they have to do to win Le Mans. As Gary Watkins shows in our report on page 16, just as in 2019 they were the quicker Toyota crew and misfortune handed victory to the other TS050. Nevertheless, Sebastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Brendon Hartley are all now multiple winners – congratulations to them on securing Toyota’s hat-trick in the 24 Hours. One team that finally did get…

3 min.
peugeot takes plunge for hypercar

WEC Peugeot will join the World Endurance Championship in 2022 with a Le Mans Hypercar. If you think you’ve read that before, you’d be right. It announced that back in November 2019, so what it effectively revealed on Friday ahead of the Le Mans 24 Hours is that it is sticking to its original plan and won’t be going down the LMDh route. The French manufacturer never wavered in its commitment to returning to the top flight of sportscar racing the year after next, only in how it was going to do it. It opted to review its plans after the announcement in January of the new LMP2-based LMDh class that offered a cheaper way for Peugeot to get back on the Le Mans 24 Hours grid for the first time since…

1 min.
hyperpole gets thumbs up for future

LE MANS 24 HOURS The new Hyperpole qualifying format for the Le Mans 24 Hours will continue next season. The new procedure that pitches the fastest six cars in each class against each other in a half-hour shootout was declared a success by race organiser the Automobile Club de l’Ouest. Asked whether Hyperpole will be part of Le Mans in June 2021, ACO president Pierre Fillon replied: “Yes, I think everybody enjoyed this kind of qualification. It is spectacular, it is good for TV and it is good for spectators – not this year, but next year.” Hyperpole was well received at Le Mans last week. There appeared to be no objectors to the system, which started with a 45-minute session on Thursday from which the fastest six cars in each class –…

1 min.
bykolles reveals lmh shape

WEC The German-based ByKolles team has revealed the first images of the Le Mans Hypercar prototype that it will race in next year’s World Endurance Championship. The new car unveiled under the ‘PMC Project LMH’ banner will retain the normally aspirated Gibson V8 of the latest version of its ENSO CLM P1/01 LMP1 car and incorporate a front-axle energy-retrieval system. The stalwart WEC competitor has also announced that road and trackday versions of the car are under development at ByKolles headquarters in Bavaria.…

2 min.
imsa postpones full-time introduction of lmdh cars

IMSA SPORTSCAR The full introduction of the LMDh category in the IMSA SportsCar Championship in North America has been pushed back by a year until the start of 2023. The US organiser revealed the delay ahead of last weekend’s Le Mans 24 Hours – in a roundabout way. The new top class of the IMSA series announced back in January was planned to replace the existing Daytona Prototype international category for 2022. Now, IMSA boss John Doonan is saying that he is expecting some examples of the new breed of LMP2-based machinery to be racing in the series over the course of 2022. At that same time he suggested that the lifecycle of the DPi formula will probably have to be extended. Doonan wasn’t more specific than that, only saying that “the market…

1 min.
fans returning to f1 events

FORMULA 1 More Formula 1 races through the remainder of the 2020 season are set to welcome fans after the Nurburgring announced its ticket-sale plans for the Eifel Grand Prix. After starting the season behind closed doors as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, F1 allowed spectators to attend a race for the first time at Mugello earlier this month, with close to 3000 fans sitting in the grandstands. This weekend’s Russian Grand Prix is set to have grandstands at 50% capacity, allowing for 30,000. Officials at the Nurburgring confirmed plans to sell up to 20,000 tickets in batches for the event on 9-11 October, with more being released should there be no spike in COVID-19 cases in Germany. Nurburgring managing director Mirco Markfort said: “In times of coronavirus, with the enormous personnel and…