Press Release – September 16, 2022
The summer hiatus is over. The Ligier European Series competitors will return to the Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium on 23 and 24 September for the fifth and penultimate heat of the year before the season finale in Portimao. This round promises to be fierce and could crown the champions of the Ligier JS P4 and Ligier JS2 R categories. But the Toboggan des Ardennes is renowned for being challenging and conducive to reversals of fortune.
Will Team Virage and Gillian Henrion be a cut above the rest?
Since making their debut in the championship in April, Team Virage and Gillian Henrion have reigned supreme in the sport-prototype category. Although the competition is tough, with some great battles on the track, the young prodigy has managed to overcome the challenges at every meeting. He has won every qualifying session and race. With 200 points in the provisional general classification and another 100 points on offer in the final two rounds (25 points per victory), Gillian Henrion and Team Virage (#16) could wrap up the championship in Belgium.
A few points behind (132 points), Natan Bihel and M Racing (#53), JS2 R Champions in 2021, have not yet thrown in the towel. Third in the provisional general classification, Monza Garage and its duo of George King and Ronnie Valori (#23) are on 107 points and could continue to move forward in the top 3. The #17 Pegasus Racing entry (Dimitri Enjalbert – Anthony Nahra), which has created more than one surprise since the start of the season, and Smart Driving and Alexandru Mirea (#44), which are full of confidence after their runner-up finish at Monza, are also worth keeping an eye on.
In the #33 Les Deux Arbres Ligier JS P4, Jacques Nicolet will share the driving duties with Frenchman Erwin Creed, who will debut in the series.
RLR MSport and Haytham Qarajouli against the gentlemen drivers from M Racing and CTF Performance
With two double victories since the beginning of the season, the RLR MSport team and its silver driver Haytham Qarajouli (#75) lead the provisional GT category classification with 142 points. In their rear-view mirror (85 points) is Laurent Millara in the #69 M Racing Ligier JS2 R with 85 points. The bronze driver, who races solo and who finished third in the championship in 2021, could make up ground by putting all his championship experience to good use. CTF Performance’s #96 bronze driver duo, Fabien Delaplace and Laurent Piguet, with three-second places and 76 points, will also try to pick up the pace and could steal second place in the general classification.
Belgian racer Mathieu Detry will join Alain Grand in the #11 TM Evolution car.
The Spa-Francorchamps Heat will start on Friday, 23 September, from 9:40 am with the first 40-minute free practice session. The second session will begin at 1:16 pm. The first fifteen-minute qualifying sessions will be held at 4:04, followed by the second at 4:29 pm. The two one-hour races will take place on Saturday at 9.10 am and 1.05 pm.
Both races will be streamed live on the series’ website and its Facebook and YouTube channels, with commentary in French and English.
CLICK HERE for the provisional entry list
CLICK HERE for the Spa Heat programme