16:45 PM

Full complement of 2017 ELMS Dunlop teams test in Italy

  • 11 out of 13 LMP2 cars have chosen Dunlop
  • LMP2 times faster than 2008 race-winning times in pre-restricted era
  • 4 Ferraris, 2 Aston Martins & 2 Porsches in one-brand Dunlop GTE class
  • All-new tyres for 2017 in both classes
  • Over 17000 km of data before season-opener
  • Dunlop cars topped 4 of 5 sessions

The European Le Mans Series (ELMS) held its official pre-season test at the world-famous Autodromo Nazionale Monza circuit in Italy. For the first time, the 2017 competitors were all together including eleven LMP and seven GT cars on Dunlop tyres.

Over two days with 14 hours on track, the teams had the opportunity to refine their set-ups for the season opener at Silverstone in three weekends time. Following the pre-season Dunlop test in Spain three weeks ago, teams are progressing their knowledge of car and tyre combinations.

2017 is a particular challenge for the LMP2 class, with all-new cars under the new regulations and an all-new tyre line-up to suit the four new chassis. Dunlop provided the new medium and medium-plus compounds for the high-speed track. The eleven Dunlop-shod LMP2 cars (Oreca, Ligier and Dallara) covered a total of 2118 laps, some 12,269km .

The top LMP2 times from the test were faster than the 2008 Monza 1000km qualifying time (1:37.928) for LMP2 winner Team Essex Porsche RS Spyder (on Dunlop tyres) in a high-budget era before the new era of tyre, engine and chassis restrictions and regulations.

In the one-brand LMGTE class, the four Ferraris, two Aston Martins and two Porsches had all three compounds to test with. The confidential tyre range is completely new for 2017 with driver feedback already pointing to improvements in performance and handling. The GT teams completed 5,433km, bringing the total Dunlop distance covered to 17703km over the two days.

Paul Bryant, International Event Manager, Dunlop Motorsport

“We have now added another three thousand laps of data to our knowledge bank. Being able to analyse as much as possible will be a big benefit before Silverstone, especially with the new confidential tyre range, teams new to the ELMS and the 2017 regulation cars. The teams are working hard to get the best from the new tyres and the last two days have been invaluable learning.

“It shows how much progress has been made in the last few years with the current specifications of car, given that the times are now faster than the mega-budget LMP2 generation, despite much lower costs and technical restrictions. The car variety and performances promise a great season of racing ahead.”