The Ligier JS P3 on the podium of both Road to Le Mans races
The 3rd edition of Road to Le Mans, the third round of the Michelin Le Mans Cup was held as the opener to the 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans. Of the 50 cars entered, 26 Ligier JS P3 replied to the invitation of the Automobile Club de l'Ouest to take part in both 55-minute races, held on the legendary 13'626 km layout. Since the first edition of the event in 2016, the Ligier JS P3 has been present on the podium on each of the five races held! In 2018, Eurointernational shone by taking pole position and the victory of the first race, and United Autosports finished second in both races. The Anglo-American team added to their success at this event by bringing their total to one victory and four second place finishes.
On Thursday afternoon, two consecutive qualifying sessions of 20 minutes each determined the starting grids of both races. The various incidents on track, yellow flags and red flags didn't give the competitors many laps in which to qualify!
Starting from pole position, the #11 Eurointernational Ligier JS P3 covered the 13 laps of the first race in the lead, widening the gap on its pursuers who were fighting for the 2nd and 3rd steps of the podium. The Italian team crossed the finishing line with a lead of more than 19 seconds, claiming a clear victory. The #33 United Autosports Ligier JS P3 finished in second place.
At the heart of an eventful second race, the #33 United Autosports Ligier JS P3 took the lead shortly after the pit stop strategies. Facing very strong competition, the team ended up repeating their performance of the first race by crossing the finish line once more in second place, a mere 0.699 seconds behind the winner.
Eurointernational's #11 Ligier JS P3 started this morning from third place. During their first passage through the Dunlop chicane, the winning car from the first race was the victim of a contact with another competitor. Rejoining at the back of the field, the Italian team managed to climb back up to sixth place, ahead of the #5 Nefis by Speed Factory Ligier JS P3 that had started from the 7th row.
The competitors of the Michelin Le Mans Cup will meet again on the 20th and 21st of July at the Red Bull Ring circuit.
Photo credit: DPPI images