Algarve Pro Racing are quick out of the blocks with their 2019 driver announcements for the European Le Mans Series.
Two of the three are very well known faces at the Portuguese team, while they have a job of getting a new driver in LMP2 cars, up to speed.
The defending ELMS LMP2 Champion Andrea Pizzitola will continue for the team. He won the title with G-Drive Racing, but has been racing for APR throughout the winter in the Asian Le Mans Series – which he also did in 2016/17. Pizzitola currently sits second in the LMP2 standings in Asia, but still have a chance to win, if the final race in Sepang goes his and the team’s way.
Mark Patterson shared the car with Pizzitola in 2016/17, and will do the same this time around in the ELMS. He is also active in the Asian LMS 2018/19 season, but shares the car with Chris McMurry and Anders Fjordbach. The 67 year-old racing driver goes after the record of being the oldest starter at the 24 Hours of Le Mans – but he still have a couple of years until he reaches that point. But you have to say, that despite his big wealth of life experience, is one of the faster bronzes drivers out there in the LMP2 field.
It will neither be McMurry nor Fjordbach as the third member of the car in the ELMS. That will be 2017 LMP3 Champ John Falb, who arrives at the team after two seasons at United Autosports. He has already tested a LMP2 car, on the Monday post the 2018 season finale, so he knows was he has in store. The 47 year-old racing driver from Las Vegas has delivered solid performances in the LMP3 category, where he was paired with Sean Rayhall for one and a half years, before Scott Andrews joined him for the season half of 2018.
The team will once again race an ORECA 07 Gibson with the 25 number on its side.
The European Le Mans Series 2019 starts on 14 April at Paul Ricard, which is located between Nice and Marseille in southern France.