Picture © DPPI
ELMS - 08/07/2019
Ten of the drivers who took part in the 2009 race will be on the grid in 2019, with two of them finishing on the top step of their class podium on the last visit to Spain.
Roman Rusinov, the reigning ELMS LMP2 Champion, won the LMGT1 category ten years ago by two laps in the no55 IPB Spartek Racing Lamborghini alongside teammate Peter Kox.
In 2009 the LMP2 category was won by the Racing Box Lola Judd driven by current LMGTE racer Andrea Piccini, the Italian driver is racing this season in the no60 Kessel Racing Ferrari 488 GTE. Piccini finished first alongside fellow Italians Matteo Bobbi and Thomas Biagi just 46 second ahead of the second placed car, with Andrea’s brother Giacomo finishing third, the reigning Michelin Le Mans Cup Champion taking the chequered flag six laps behind his siblings car.
Olivier Pla was second of the LMP2 class at the wheel of the Quifel ASM Team Ginetta Zytek alongside Miguel Amaral. For the 4 Hours of Barcelona, Olivier Pla will be at the wheel of the n°25 Algarve pro racing Oreca 07.
Another driver who tasted the podium champagne was Bruno Senna, the Brazilian finishing third overall in the LMP1 Team Oreca Matmut Oreca AIM alongside Stephane Ortelli, 3 laps behind the winning car, the 007 Aston Martin Racing Lola of Jan Charouz, Tomas Enge and Stephan Mücke. Bruno Senna will be on the 2019 ELMS grid at the wheel of the no43 RLR MSport Oreca-Gibson.
Other drivers who took part in the 2009 race include 2019 24 Hours of Le Mans LMP2 race winner Nico Lapierre, who raced alongside Olivier Panis in the LMP1 Team Oreca Matmut AIM but the French duo only completed 108 laps and were not classified. Lapierre is competing in the no37 Cool Racing Oreca and Panis will be in charge in the Panis Barthez Competition Garage as team owner.
Pierre Ragues and Tristen Gommendy were both racing in 2009, Ragues finishing just off the overall podium in 4th place in the LMP1 Signature Plus Oreca, while Gommendy finished 9th in the LMP2 category. Pierre Ragues will be in the no30 Duqueine Engineering Oreca, while Tristen Gommendy will be racing in the no39 Graff Oreca in the 2019 race.
Two of the drivers competing in the LMP3 category at the 4 Hours of Barcelona were also racing in Spain ten years ago. Brazil’s Tommy Erdos was not classified ten years ago when the LMP2 class RML Lola Mazda only completed 82 laps, while Matthieu Lahaye had better luck and finished 5th in the LMP2 category in the no35 Oak Racing Pescarolo Mazda.
Erdos will be competing in the 2019 race in the no2 United Autosports Ligier-Nissan, while Lahaye will be looking for his second race win of the season in the no17 Ultimate Norma.
Christian Ried is the tenth driver who competed in the 2009 1000km of Catalunya, the German driver finishing 7th in the LMGT2 category in the no88 Team Felbermayr Proton Porsche 997 GT3 RSR. In 2019 Ried is still behind the wheel of a Proton run Porsche, this time the no77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR in which he won Round 2 of the 2019 season in Monza alongside Matteo Cairoli and Riccardo Pera, to lead the LMGTE category going into the 4 Hours of Barcelona.
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