ALMS: Level 5 Motorsports switches to new HPD LMP2 car

Level 5 new HPD LMP2 car Level 5 Motorsports
Level 5 Motorsports car at the 2011 Long Beach Grand Prix.

Published on 7/21/2011

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American Le Mans Series regular Level 5 Motorsports on Thursday confirmed that it has a new alliance with Honda Performance Development that will see the championship-winning team make a midseason switch from its Lola chassis to HPD's new LMP2 car, beginning with the Six Hours of Silverstone round of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup in September.

Level 5's midseason switch comes following a successful start to its LMP2 program, with class wins at this year's 12 Hours of Sebring and the Grand Prix of Long Beach (where it was the only LMP2 entry). Team owner Scott Tucker and co-drivers Christophe Bouchut and João Barbosa also achieved podium finishes at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Six Hours of Imola in a separate Honda-powered prototype.

The team will now use the HPD ARX-01g, Honda's chassis and engine combination, in the remaining Intercontinental Le Mans Cup rounds at Silverstone, Road Atlanta and Zhuhai, China. Additionally, Level 5 plans to field two HPDs in the six-hour American Le Mans Series race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in September and also in the 14th annual Petit Le Mans series finale in October.

"We looked through all of the numbers, inside and out, and from our perspective, there's no doubt the Honda package in the new cost-capped configuration will be a front-runner in LMP2," Tucker said. "We've seen gains with the engine all year, and the good thing is that there's still room for development. The HPD engine and chassis combination has proven to be the best over the years. We feel very comfortable and confident in making this unprecedented and decisive move in the middle of the season."

Built by Wirth Research, the HPD ARX-01g is an evolution of the highly successful prototype, which has captured 22 class victories worldwide since its debut in 2007, including the 2010 24 Hours of Le Mans. While sharing DNA with the ARX-01d, Level 5's new open-top contender will conform to the Automobile Club de l'Ouest's cost-capped rules introduced this season. The team has reserved the first two chassis that will be produced.

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