Le Mans invites F1 manufacturers
Steven English and Kevin Turner
Article mis en ligne le 13 juin 2009
dernière modification le 11 juin 2009

The organisers of the Le Mans 24 Hours have thrown the door open for any of Formula 1’s manufacturers to compete in the French classic - and they have even been offered the chance to help shape future regulations.

F1 teams are due to meet with FIA president Max Mosley today in an attempt to reach a last-minute agreement ahead of the publication of the entry list for 2010 tomorrow morning.

Several of the manufacturers have been linked to sportscar programmes if they go through with their threats not to enter Formula 1 next year.

Piero Ferrari, son of marque founder Enzo, has mentioned Le Mans as a potential avenue for the team, and Toyota is also believed to be interested in a return to the 24 Hours 10 years after its last appearance at the event with its GT-One car.

ACO general manager Remy Brouard says Le Mans would welcome F1 manufacturers returning to sportscar racing and insists that Le Mans’ governing body is open to suggestions from manufacturers on future regulations.

When asked about the number of manufacturers involved in the 24 Hours, Brouard said : « There is no ideal figure, the more the better. They [the Formula 1 teams] are welcome here. If they want to make proposals, we will listen. »

Brouard would not comment on which manufacturers, if any, had been in contact with the ACO about possible entry to the event.

Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo will be the official starter of this year’s race on Saturday, and former double world champion Fernando Alonso is also due to attend after admitting his interest in competing in the event in the future.

Renault and BMW have also had success as past winners of the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1978 and 1999 respectively.