Translation Paula Lamares | Photo AdrenalMedia/Jakob Ebrey Photography
Filipe Albuquerque (United Autosports Ligier JS P217 # 32) won the first race of the European Le Mans Series at Silverstone, on Saturday.
When it came to the last stint, one hour from the end of the race, Albuquerque was third and with a handicap over 30s for the first. The Portuguese driver knew it would be difficult, but better tire’s management allowed him to step on the edge and got a victory that he thought it was not possible at the car and team’s debut in the LMP2 category.
“It’s the best way to start but we still have a lot of work to do, it’s important that we keep the performance and work the Ligier as best as possible, and my teammates are very motivated and the team determined to reach the best possible results, ingredients for a successful season ” Albuquerque said.
The Algarve Pro also did quite well, at least as far as the gearbox allowed it. The Algarve-based team even had provisional pole, but one with qualifying starting five minutes before the end due to a red flag situation, the team preferred to save tires and to start from the 5th place of the grid.
When Matthew McMurry took the wheel, the team followed in second and so it continued until the gearbox gave way, forcing the American pilot to give up.
However the mark of the good performance achieved and that, in the future, we can count on them for the discussion of the places on the podium.
With the victory in the LMP3 class, United Autosports made history and became the first team to win in different categories in the same race. The current title holder in the LMP3 category, left Ligier JS P3 # 6 at 41.166 seconds and also placed his second Ligier JS P3 # 3 at the bottom of the podium.
In the LMGTE, the TF sport, that last year won the Michelin GT3 Cup and this year it debuts in the LMGTE class, won the race with the Aston Martin V8 Vantage # 90 leaving the Porsche 911 RSR # 77 of the Proton competition one lap away. In third place on the podium was the current Aston Martin V8 Vantage # 99 holder of the ELMS title LMGTE.