Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport have announced a three car 2017/18 Asian Le Mans Series campaign.
The Le Mans LMP2 Champions will compete in both LMP2 and LMP3 categories, with pair of LMP2 ORECA 05-Nissans and an LMP3 Ligier JSP3-Nissan
Leading the LMP2 championship after three wins – including an historic LMP2 victory at Le Mans – Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport has been making its mark in the FIA World Endurance Championship this season, but the Chinese team has not forgotten its Asian roots and today announced a three-car assault in the 2017/18 Asian Le Mans Series.
On the hunt for a fourth championship title – and out to exact revenge for heartbreak last year – Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport will compete in both the LMP2 and the LMP3 categories, partnering with JOTA Sport which makes its Asian debut, for both the two LMP2 ORECA 05-Nissan cars and the LMP3 Ligier JSP3-Nissan in the four-round championship which begins on October 27 in Zhuhai, China.
Team co-founder and co-owner David Cheng has previously found success in the Asian Le Mans Series, winning the championship alongside Ho-Pin Tung in the 2013/14 and 2014/15 seasons in LMP2, and in the 2015/16 season in the LMP3 category.
In last season’s Asian Le Mans finale, it was only the most unfortunate of circumstances that saw a fourth title slip away: the LMP2 of Tung, Thomas Laurent and Gustavo Menezes was hit by a rival at the first turn of the opening lap. The team was forced to retire early, a crushing end to what had been, up until that point, a strong season.
Now in its fifth season, the Asian Le Mans Series is a tough and competitive championship, which attracts a number of entrants across a variety of classes and categories. Cheng’s early success in the Asian series helped him take the step up to his now-realised 24 Hours of Le Mans dream.
Said Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport team Director Rémy Brouard: “Our team’s history began in July, 2013 at the very first Asian Le Mans Series race in Inje, South Korea, while our first LMP2 title in 2013/14 helped us earn an invitation from the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) to compete in the Le Mans 24 Hours and, in 2014, the team made history as three Chinese drivers – David Cheng, Adderly Fong and Ho-Pin Tung – finished seventh at their first Le Mans 24 Hours.
“David and Ho-Pin won the Asian Le Mans title again in 2014/15, and a third title followed in the 2015/16 season in LMP3. It was in 2015/16 that this Chinese team had the idea to give an opportunity to 2015 CIK-FIA World Karting champion Thomas Laurent, who was just 17 at the time. Thomas, David and Ho-Pin won four races together en route to the championship title.
“For the 2017/18 Asian Le Mans Series season, and with its commitment to developing young Chinese drivers, Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport will again look to provide up-and-coming drivers with opportunities to prove themselves.”
Having laid its foundations in the Asian Le Mans Series, Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport is looking forward to returning to Asia, where it will have the opportunity to race in front of its home fans.
The team is also keen to expand it successful partnership with JOTA Sport for the Asian series, extending a successful LMP2 cooperation that in just a few months has seen Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport reach the pinnacle of endurance racing. But in a competitive championship with plenty of talented teams and drivers, the team knows it will need to continue its peak performance to win on home turf.
“I am delighted to announce Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport’s participation and commitment to the 2017/18 Asian Le Mans Series in both the LMP2 and the LMP3 categories.” said Team owner and driver David Cheng.
“I have enjoyed racing in the Asian Le Mans Series since the first race of the series and, as the championship has grown, it has become more and more competitive. We’re looking forward to a tough fight as we work towards winning a fourth Asian Le Mans Series title.
“I’m delighted to be again working with JOTA Sport. The entire team has been working together so well this season in the FIA World Endurance Championship and we will be working hard to continue this success in Asia.
“Providing young drivers with the opportunity to prove themselves is something that is important to both Jackie Chan and myself, and we look forward to having the opportunity to work with and to help develop young talents.
Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport is looking forward evaluating new talent and working with the next generation of Chinese motorsport stars.
The nine Jackie Chan DC Racing x JOTA Sport drivers competing in the Asian Le Mans Series will be announced in the coming weeks.”
Ho-Pin Tung: “David and I have enjoyed success in the Asian Le Mans Series and we are fortunate to have won three championship titles together to make our pairing the most successful in the championship’s history.
Our goal from the start has been to work hard and develop a strong team that can win championships, as well as being a team that offers opportunities to young drivers. My WEC teammate Thomas Laurent is the perfect example.
With help of long-time partner PASO we took him from go-karts, groomed him for two seasons in Asian Le Mans in our LMP3 and LMP2 and the rest of the story is known – it’s been an incredible year in WEC so far. We are proud to be achieving these goals and we look forward to another strong season in the Asian Le Mans Series.”
Sam Hignett, JOTA Sport: “Everyone at JOTA Sport is excited to work with Jackie Chan DC Racing on the team’s LMP2 campaign in the Asian Le Mans Series.
As we get ready for our Asian debut, we expect a number of tough challenges, including the logistics of competing in both the final rounds of the FIA World Endurance Championship and the opening race of the Asian Le Mans Series, as well as tackling the increasingly tough competition in Asia.
However, we’ve been working hard making all the preparations required to be successful, and I believe we have the right team in place to fight for the championship.
We look forward to getting this campaign underway in Zhuhai in October.”
2017-18 Asian Le Mans Series Calendar
- October 27-29 – 4 Hours of Zhuhai (China)
- December 1-3 – 4 Hours of Fuji (Japan)
- January 11-13 – 6 Hours of Buriram (Thailand)
- February 2-4 – 4 Hours of Sepang (Malaysia)