The FIA Endurance Commision has chosen to give the privateer LMP1 teams almost unrestricted possibilities the test day ahead of the 24 Hours of Le Mans 2019.
None of the non-hybrid cars were within 2,3 seconds of Toyota Gazoo Racing in the race, and a massive 4 seconds in the qualifying. That was such a huge difference, that there was never any excitement about the race result, since both Toyota Gazoo Racing cars has lapped everybody else with a lap, in less than 3 hours of racing.
The mandatory test day will be run on 2 June 2019 ahead of the 24 Hours race, which is run two weeks later. All entered teams will have to run a car and crew, so they can get a lot of laps on the track. Drivers who has been on the track within the last 5 years, don’t have to show up in case they have other races to do that weekend.
Toyota Gazoo Racing will be 10 kilos heavier than at the race last year, but will stick to the same amount of hybrid energy plus fuel. That should slow them down a slight a bit.
On the other hand, Rebellion Racing, SMP Racing, ByKolles Racing Team plus DragonSpeed have been allowed to use 7 kg more of fuel per hour, but other than that, they don’t have any limit on how much they use per lap, opposite to the EOT in 2018.
All this has been done to narrow the gaps in LMP1, so there won’t be 12 laps between Toyota Gazoo Racing and the closest competitor after 24 hours – and that was with no major issues for any of the teams last year.
Let’s hope for a dry test day, and 8 hours of uninterrupted running, so we get a taste of what’s in store regarding the changes, or if Toyota Gazoo Racing once again will kick all the other team’s behinds.