Le Mans 24-Hour Race driver, Alex Kapadia, has signed a deal to contest the 2017 Michelin Le Mans Cup in a Ligier JS P3 for the RLR/Mike Smith team and share driving duties with Ross Warburton, writes James Beckett.
The Michelin Le Mans Cup supports the European Le Mans Series (ELMS) at all races this year, with the exception of the Silverstone round in April, but adds a pair of 55-minute races on the full Le Mans 24 Hours course in support of the main event in June.
The Michelin-backed series sees LMP3 cars joining the GT3 runners for the first time this season and it has already attracted a number of established teams and drivers, and Kapadia is pleased to add his name to the growing list.
Kapadia, from Pitstone, raced in the Le Mans 24-Hours in 2015 for Team AAI in a Porsche LM GTE car, while racing in the Road To Le Mans event last year in a P3 prototype.
The local racer said: “I’m really excited to be working with Ross in the Michelin Le Mans Cup series this year. RLR are a great team to work with so we hope to be able to challenge at the front.
“LMP3 is an exciting class offering a whole range of drivers an opportunity both to compete and to climb the motorsport ladder. My role is both to find and deliver pace from the car, and to help Ross to unlock his potential too. I’m really looking forward to it.”
Kapadia will have a busy season in car, as he has already been nominated to race a P3 car in the ELMS with Morten Dons and John Farano.
He added: “I am going to have very busy weekends this year at some of these race meetings, but no complaints from me whatsoever as this is turning into a very exciting year for me.”
Kapadia’s team-mate, Ross Warburton, is no stranger to endurance style racing, a prototype car or the ELMS circuits, having competed in the ELMS last year in a Ligier JS P3.
He is also the owner of the RLR team’s new LMP2 class Ligier JS P217, saying: “I’m really pleased to be back with RLR this year in the Ligier. I’m looking forward to racing with and learning from Alex.
“The jump into ELMS straight from GT racing was a steep learning curve but I hope to put that experience to good use in 2017.”