Image credit: SportsCarGlobal.
The new team So24! by Lombard Racing officially presented their drivers and car to the media today at the final day of testing for the European Le Mans Series at France’s famous Circuit Paul Ricard.
The team is the brainchild of Dominique Payen and Jean Lombard and, although a new entrant to endurance racing, is building on solid foundations with Lombard having trained a whole generation of drivers with the Formula Ford sport driving school in Montlhery, France as well as managing many teams across different racing disciplines.
2011 Le Mans LMP2 winner Olivier Lombard will pilot the Ligier JS P2 Judd LMP2 and is joined by ex Signatech Alpine driver Vincent Capillaire and Jonathan Coleman (ex-Pegasus Racing). We took two minutes with Jonathan Coleman to chat about the upcoming season.
SCG: Hi Jonathan. Well, new year, new car, new team. Nothing like a challenge!
JC : Yes, it’s certainly a challenge. the car is new to us well.
SCG : So I’m guessing that you’re treating this like a shakedown?
JC : Yes, that’s correct. We are working through our tests and it’s important for the team as well as the car.
SCG : Talking of the team, how are you finding it with an all French team?
JC : It’s obviously a challenge, but I was with Pegasus last year so I have some experience. The team are being really good about things and try and speak English whenever they can and of course, I’m trying to use some French as well.
SCG : Just back to the car for a moment, how has it performed these past two days? Has it misbehaved or is everything as you have expected?
JC : Yes, actually very much so. As we are treating this as a shakedown we are just concentrating on working through our own tests and not going for all out speed and the car is performing very well. It’s also good for us as a team overall. As everything is new it gives us a chance to practice working together.
SCG : Looking at the year ahead, being a new team in the ELMS is one thing but also looking to move up to WEC next year? That’s some big plans.
JC : Yes they are. We have Olivier and he’s a great driver so I’m sure that will make a big difference. However, our immediate plans are of course on the ELMS and that is where my focus is – my aim is for a really successful season here.
SCG : Well we certainly wish you and the team that. Thanks for taking the time and we’ll see you at Silverstone.