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Home / Three Iconic Manufacturers, One Great Season of Racing

Picture © Jakob Ebrey Photography

Three Iconic Manufacturers, One Great Season of Racing

ELMS - 22/12/2017 - Jeff CARTER

The LMGTE class in the 2017 European Le Mans Series may have featured the smallest grid of the three categories but what it lacked in numbers it made up for in quality of the teams and drivers entered. The 2017 season was a straight fight between three iconic manufacturers – Aston Martin, Ferrari and Porsche, with a one off appearance by the Larbre Competition Chevrolet Corvette at Monza as the French team prepared for the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

JMW Motorsport started the season with the Ferrari F458 Italia, racing with the older car for the first two rounds at Silverstone and Monza before switching to the new F488 for the 24 Hours of Le Mans, where the British team won the LMGTE Am category against a quality field from the World Endurance Championship, the United States and Asia.

Ferrari leads the way in Qualifying

The Ferrari 488 GTE led the way in qualifying, capturing four of the six pole positions in 2017.  The no55 Spirit of Race Ferrari took three poles at Monza, Le Castellet and Portimão, with the no51 Spirit of Race F488 taking the other at Red Bull Ring.  The no90 TF Sport Aston Martin took pole at the manufacturers home track of Silverstone, while the no77 Proton Competition Porsche came out on top after qualifying for the 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps.

Ferrari take four wins from six in 2017

Ferrari also won four of the six races with one for the F458 in its very last race at Monza and three for the F488 run by Spirit of Race. There was four further podium finishes for the Italian manufacturer.  The Aston Martin Vantage scored one win at Silverstone from pole position, while Porsche had to wait until the final chequered flag of the 2017 season in Portimão to record an ELMS win.

Fastest Cars on Track

The fastest cars through the speed trap were Ferrari and Aston Martin, with the two sharing the honours even with three apiece.  Aston Martin had the fastest car at Silverstone (TF Sport), Spa-Francorchamps (Beechdean AMR) and Portimão (TF Sport), while Ferrari were fastest at Monza (no55 Spirit of Race), Red Bull Ring (no51 Spirit of Race) and Le Castellet (no55 Spirit of Race).

The 2018 European Le Mans Series will get underway with the official test at the Circuit Paul Ricard at the beginning of April, which will be followed on Sunday 15 April by the opening race of the season, the 4 Hours of Le Castellet.

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