Image credit: SportscarGlobal.
Tequila Patrón ESM begins its second chapter of the 2015 motorsports season this weekend for the season-opening FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) race, the 6 Hours of Silverstone.
Armed with a roster of more than 20 team members and five world-class drivers representing the United States, Scotland and Denmark, the American team is ready to race in the opening round of one of the most prestigious events on the motorsports calendar.
While competing in the WEC this year, Tequila Patrón ESM has established its home away from home in Great Bookham in the UK. Shortly after the WEC Prologue preseason test at Paul Ricard in France, Tequila Patrón ESM headed back to England and set up its remote headquarters just south of London near Woking.
Driver Ryan Dalziel, of Coatbridge, Scotland, grew up racing in the United Kingdom and two Tequila Patrón ESM crew members also hail from the United Kingdom; Team manager Tone Leith is from Oxford, England, while gearbox specialist Noel Flannery calls Edinburgh, Scotland as his home, thus Silverstone could now be considered the team’s ‘home’ race!
Scott Sharp, Dalziel and David Heinemeier Hansson (DHH) will co-drive the #30 Tequila Patrón ESM HPD ARX-03b. Both Dalziel and Heinemeier Hansson already have podium finishes at Silverstone to their name; Dalziel finished second in the same HPD ARX-03b powered by a Honda 2.8-liter twin turbo V6 when he raced with Starworks Motorsports in 2012 and DHH won the 2014 GTE-AM race and finished second in 2013 in the LMP2 class.
Driver/owner Sharp might be the “WEC rookie” of the #30 lineup but his championship-loaded résumé proves otherwise. Sharp holds several drivers championships including three consecutive Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) titles (1986-1998), two SCCA Trans-Am titles and one American Le Mans Series (ALMS) LMP1 Championship title that he earned with then co-driver David Brabham. Sharp is also the 1996 Indy Racing League co-champion.
Ed Brown and Jon Fogarty, co-drivers of the #31 Tequila Patrón ESM HPD ARX-03b, make their Silverstone debuts this weekend. Fogarty being no stranger to sportscar racing having two championship titles (2007 and 2009), 16 wins, 54 podium finishes and 30 pole positions in the US.
Johannes van Overbeek, the third season-long co-driver of the #31 machine, was slated to compete, but a broken rib has sidelined the Californian. Unable to travel, his replacement driver will be announced shortly.
In March, Tequila Patrón ESM and Honda Performance Development mutually agreed that it would be competitively advantageous to run the ARX-03b at Sebring and Silverstone while the ARX-04b coupe continued development. From the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps onwards, the team will compete in two Tequila Patrón-sponsored Ligier J2 P2, closed LMP2 sport-prototypes designed by Onroak Automotive.