Virgo Motorsport Prepared for Le Mans Debut
9th June 2008
The reigning Le Mans Series GT2 champions, Virgo Motorsport, head to France today for the Le Mans 24 Hour race, the first time that the team has taken on this ultimate sportscar endurance challenge. With an experienced driver line-up of Rob Bell, Tim Sugden and Tim Mullen, the team is hoping to be one of the class front-runners this weekend.
Jim McWhirter, Team Principal, says of the team’s Le Mans debut, “As current champions we have the capability to win races, so we go to Le Mans looking to be in the mix, and I think we’re strong enough for a podium. Of course it’s a tough race and to be on that podium you have to complete 24 hours of racing which isn’t easy for anyone. It’s our first time there, so to finish will be an achievement, but to be top three in our class will be fantastic.”
Virgo Motorsport has been competing in the Le Mans Series for the past two seasons, taking the title for the first time last year. This year, after three rounds of competition, the team is leading the GT2 championship and has added the 24 Hour race as an additional challenge. Chris Warne, Team Manager says of the team’s prospects, “Our first goal is to put on a good show and reach the finish. If we’re there after 24 hours we should be on the podium, but then the question is – which step? First we have to finish though and this is a different world for us. Although neither Jim or I have been to Le Mans, many of our team and all our drivers have experience there, so as a first time team we have the depth of knowledge to cope with the challenge.”
It will be Tim Sugden’s fifth appearance in this legendary race and he is looking forward to it. He says, “I think this year I’ll have my best chance of winning. We have a strong team and plenty of experience; we ran well in the test, so if we can have the reliability and a little luck, we should be on for a good performance.”
Tim Mullen has raced in this event for the last three years but success has also eluded him, so he’s looking to run well. He says, “I’ve had three attempts, but the track has beaten us each time, so I’m hoping that with this strong line up and top quality team we can come out on top.”
Rob Bell will return to Le Mans after making his debut in the race last year. He says, “I’m definitely hooked on this race. I didn’t know quite what to expect last year, so it will be different this time, but I can’t wait to have another crack at going for glory in this legendary event.”
The Virgo Motorsport team travel to Le Mans today and have a busy schedule of scrutineering, driver parade, practice and qualifying sessions before the race start on Saturday afternoon.