Ferrari WEC GT drivers prepare for the hypercar era with LMP2 testing

The Italian brand teased an image of its highly anticipated 2023 Le Mans Hypercar ahead of the Le Mans 24 Hours race earlier this month, and plans to begin testing with the yet-to-be-named machine next month at its indoor test venue Fiorano.

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In anticipation, Ferrari gave a number of the current stable WEC GT a taste of the prototype machines in a two-day test with the AF Corse-run Oreca 07-Gibson in Vallelunga in the week leading up to Le Mans test day, as first reported by French outlet Endurance-Info .

David Rijon and two full-time GTE Pro drivers joined James Calado, Alessandro Pier Guidi, Antonio Foco and Miguel Molina, two drivers to race for the AF Corse Oreca full-time in the LMP2 division of WEC, Niklas Nielsen and Alessio Rovira.

Ferrari has yet to announce who will be part of the group of Hypercar drivers at WEC next year, but it is likely to use at least some of its current talent in GT.

“The goal was just to get us up to speed with more downforce, better brakes again, and be ready when we start with the Hypercar,” Calado told Motorsport.com about the test. “Within a few laps we were all on pace.

“I’ve spent most of my career in downforce cars and you’ll never forget. It feels different at first, but soon it feels natural and within a few laps you can hit your limit.

“We were all pleased with how the testing went and we are all looking forward to the final reveal of the Hypercar.”

Foucault, who joined the Ferrari GTE Pro only this year, told Motorsport.com: “It was a little different from the GT, but I did it already in 2021. [the Rolex 24 at] Daytona with an LMP2, so I had some experience with this type of vehicle.

“In terms of driving and everything, it’s still pretty much the same. You always have to adapt your driving style. But with more downforce I felt more comfortable.”

Calado, who finished second at Le Mans alongside Pierre Guédi and Daniel Serra, who did not participate in the LMP2 test, will not be drawn into whether testing means he will definitely be part of Ferrari’s two-car lineup of hypercars. for the 2023 season.

The decision is up to Antonello [Coletta, Ferrari GT Competizione boss]where he feels we have to be drivers,” said the Briton. “Either way I’m proud to be a part of Ferrari and the team, there was a lot of development work going on behind the scenes.

“He will make the right decision and we accept whatever is given to us.”

Foucault, who combines his driving at Ferrari WEC with a simulator role for the brand’s Formula 1 team, added: “I’m still very young but to be part of this family you have to do your best every day, you have to be really professional because it is a really professional team.

“I’ve been here for a long time already, so I really hope I can stay here longer than I already have.”

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