After much anticipation, the cover has finally come off the #55 Undercover Simracing Ferrari 458 LMGTE supported by Kaspersky Motorsport, which will be competing in the 10th edition of the Virtual Endurance Championship (VEC) with the livery based on the team’s 2017 Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup car.
The VEC using rFactor 2 is based on the cars and race format used in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC). The team still using the 458, which dominated the LMGTE class in the virtual Le Mans 24 Hours in 2014 are treated to the glorious sound of the naturally aspirated V8 F136 engine twinned with the striking Kaspersky Motorsport livery. Preparations have been well underway for the pre-season test event at Estoril, which takes place on 9th September 2017.
The backbone of the team has been carried over from last season with Englishman Jimi Hughes and Belgian Peter Noé looking to add to the silverware from last season. There were highs including a Podium at Jimi's home circuit, Silverstone and a front row start at 24 Hours. Welshman Nick Curry also retains his seat for season 10, following his valiant effort at Sepang last season stepping in for one of the drivers with less than 24 hours notice. Englishman Alex Scott will be joining the Danish outfit later in the season and looking to repeat the incredible pace shown in the Sebring 12 hours earlier in the year. Last but not least, Undercover Simracing's latest recruit, Dutchman Wilbert Velthove completes a competitive line up bringing the ultimate VEC experience, solid pace and consistency to the team.
Having had a solid first season as a team in the VEC last season, Undercover Simracing's #55 crew are aiming to back up last seasons consistent points finishes with more silverware and that illusive first race win in season 10. There is also some unfinished business at the 24 Hours of Le Mans this season, having cruelly been denied a podium due to technical issues just after dawn in the great race at Circuit de la Sarthe last season, despite running comfortably within the top 5 and in sight of the podium too.
But the #55 car is not alone! The teams #50 Undercover Simracing Oreca-Nissan LMP2 will be fighting it out in the second prototype class, once again bearing the stunning Kaspersky Motorsport colours.
The Le Mans Prototype 2 (LMP2) is the baby of the two prototype classes. They are race cars purposely built to comply with a range of technical requirements, similar to the LMP1s, however they lack the power of their senior counterparts.
The driver line up retains some familiar faces, with the sole Dane Carsten Dyndegaard and the English trio of Jon Davies, Chris Pickford and Adam Delmont ready to push the 4.5 litre V8 to its limits! With years of sim-racing experience and a good camaraderie between them, the drivers are keen to continue their strong partnership together from previous seasons and push on to the top of the standings.
Along with the sister car, the team are preparing for the pre-season test at Estoril with plenty of practice, looking to develop and tweak the perfect setup leading up to race day. While the preparation is key, the race strategy is arguably even more crucial. Tyre wear, fuel stops and driver swaps are all important things to carefully plan, in order to give the team the best chance for a top result.
After a year of ups and downs, with encouraging performances marred by technical difficulties, incidents outside of the team’s control, the #50 rounded off season 9 with a podium at the Le Mans 24 Hours in June 2017. The team will want to carry on that good form into season 10, whilst looking for that maiden win in the series and prove their rightful place in the VEC.
Creating a replica of the livery has been no easy task. The word replica doesn’t really do it justice. The team’s chief graphic designer Jason Bence has painstakingly created and moved over 350 individual layers of shapes to create the masterpiece. With the striking reds and greens used to mimic the Official Kaspersky Motorsport livery, the team is incredibly confident that they will stand out from the crowd.
Along with the sister car, the team are preparing for the pre-season test at Estoril with plenty of practice, looking to develop and tweak the perfect setup leading up to race day. While the preparation is key, the race strategy is arguably even more crucial. Tyre wear, fuel stops and driver swaps are all important things to carefully plan, in order to give the team the best chance for a top result. Undercover Simracing