The Circuit Paul Ricard gets the 2022 European Le Mans Series championship underway, where a seven-strong Ferrari entry list will again bid to be amongst the protagonists, after an extraordinary 2021 season in which every race was won by a Ferrari. The opening round was preceded by a series of collective tests held last weekend at the same French track.
The team to beat. After having scooped the team and driver titles, Iron Lynx will be looking to reaffirm their place at the top of the LMGTE class table. The current champion Matteo Cressoni will share the driving chores with Claudio Schiavoni and Davide Rigon, in place of Rino Mastronardi and Miguel Molina.
Spirit of Race’s Ferrari 488 GTE, which finished runner-up last year with David Perel and Duncan Cameron, looks likely to be as fiercely competitive as ever. Alongside them will be Matt Griffin, who was unable to take part in all the rounds last season.
Iron Lynx will participate with a second all-female car, that of the Iron Dames project, whose results improved over the course of the season. The line-up will include Rahel Frey, Sarah Bovy and the winner of the Ferrari Challenge Europe Trofeo Pirelli, Michelle Gatting.
The entry list is also set to include the Kessel Racing team with Takeshi Kimura, Frederik Schandorff and Mikkel Jensen, as well as JMW Motorsport, the ELMS champions in 2017, featuring Giacomo Petrobelli, Sean Hudspeth and Matthew Payne.
New Entry. Debut for Rinaldi Racing who will field two Ferrari 488 GTEs: in the no. 32 will be Pierre Ehret, Nicolas Varrone and Memo Gildey, while Christian Hook, Oscar Tunjo and Fabrizio Crestani will take turns in the no. 33.
Programme. On-track activities commence on the 16th with free practice from 9 a.m. Qualifying is scheduled for the same day from 1.50 p.m. The 4-hour race gets underway on 17 April from 11 a.m.