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LMP3 Compared

LMC - 07/02/2018 - Jeff CARTER

Picture © Jakob Ebrey Photography

First seen on track in the ELMS in 2015, the LMP3 category has become a very important step on the career ladder for drivers and teams wanting to compete in the world of endurance, with some drivers seeing their ultimate goal of racing in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

In 2017 LMP3 was added to the Michelin Le Mans Cup as the first rung on the ladder and a direct comparison can be draw between the cars racing in the ELMS and the Le Mans Cup last season at five of the circuits where the two series raced on the same weekend – Monza, Red Bull Ring, Le Castellet, Spa-Francorchamps and Portimão.

At each of the five meetings held in 2017 the cars running in the ELMS set the faster lap times, but only by a small margin.  As LMP3 in both ELMS and MLMC run to the same regulations on the same tyres and using the same Nissan engines, the differences can be down to set up and driver ability.  The only other variable factor is the weather as the MLMC ran only on Saturday with the exception of Portimão and the ELMS qualified on Saturday and raced on Sunday at all of the 2017 events listed. 

However the list below, showing the fastest LMP3 lap in the whole weekend, does indicate that the LMP3 cars in both series are closely matched, with the competition becoming harder as teams and drivers progress up the endurance ladder.

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11 April

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