Craft-Bamboo Racing has their sights set on consecutive FRD LMP3 Series victories in Shanghai this weekend and hopes to continue the success that began earlier this month in Zhejiang. The #95 ‘Lightning’ McQueen’ Ligier JS P3 took pole position and victory in round one’s main race to help put them in the lead of the drivers’ and teams’ championship. The team will be fighting hard this weekend to extend that gap to the rest of the field in the two sprint races to give them a significant lead as the season reaches its midpoint. It won’t be easy for the #95 ‘Lightning McQueen’ Ligier though, with the #20 ‘Jackson Storm’ sister car also vying for the top step of the podium this weekend.
The #95 Ligier JS P3 of Mathias Beche and James Winslow has proven to be a very effective combination, with both drivers qualifying for the front row of each race in Zhejiang. With only two points separating their lead from their closest competitors, the pair will focus on another strong qualifying run this weekend to give them the advantage they need to stay ahead. Thankfully, both drivers have already driven the circuit and will be primed to take pole position in both races, with a focus on finding the Ligier's optimal setup in the two free practice sessions. The #95 ‘Lightning McQueen’ will aim for a clean run in both races this weekend to keep its place at the top of the standings.
Marco Bonanomi will replace Alex Tagliani for this round, with the Canadian driver unable to make the event due to a clash in his racing calendar. Bonanomi will pair up with Australian Greg Taylor in the #20 Ligier and both drivers will have to spend time in the early sessions getting to grips with the track. Taylor has been hard at work in the simulator before heading to Shanghai, so he should be able to adjust to the 5.451km circuit with ease. With Bonanomi’s expertise as a former Audi LMP1 factory driver, the Italian will be up to speed in no time, and the #20 ‘Jackson Storm’ will be looking for a better starting position at the sharp end of the field after suffering issues in both qualifying sessions in Zhejiang. The #20 ‘Jackson Storm’ Ligier showed great pace during the last round and made a phenomenal comeback to finish fourth in the main race. This brand new driver line-up combined with the #20’s proven pace provides an excellent opportunity for Bonanomi and Taylor to take victory in front of the Chinese crowds in Shanghai.
Craft-Bamboo Racing’s 2017 FRD LMP3 Series championship challenge would not have been possible without the support from Disney-Pixar, Nickaz, Gravity, POAD, Orangebus and Stand 21.
Friday 28th July
16:45 - 17:45 FRD LMP3 Series Free Practice 1
Saturday 29th July
9:00 - 10:00 FRD LMP3 Series Free Practice 2
14:00 - 14:10 FRD LMP3 Series Qualifying 1
14:20 - 14:30 FRD LMP3 Series Qualifying 2
17:10 - 18:00 FRD LMP3 Series Opening Race
Sunday 30th July
13:20 - 14:20 FRD LMP3 Series Main Race
Richard Coleman, CEO of Craft-Bamboo Racing
“While we are currently leading the championship, the FRD LMP3 Series is incredibly competitive and we will have to push hard in Shanghai if we are going to achieve similar results this weekend. Marco Bonanomi joins us for this round in the #20 Ligier and with his exceptional talents, I believe him and Greg will be fighting for the lead against the #95. It is also great to be working with Disney-Pixar again for this round to help them promote the upcoming ‘Cars 3’ movie release in China by decorating the Ligiers in these iconic liveries.”
Mathias Beche, #95
“Shanghai will be an important race for the team and I hope we will be able to perform as good as in the first round. The layout and the specificity of the track will be very different from Zhejiang, with high speed corners and flat tarmac. It will be another interesting challenge for the drivers and the engineers, and one in which I am looking forward to rising up to!”
James Winslow, #95
"Shanghai is a great circuit and has always been good to me and I'm looking forward to joining Craft-Bamboo Racing again for round two of the FRD LMP3 series. The series proved extremely competitive during round one of the championship, and after taking the win in Zhejiang we look to continue our winning streak in Shanghai."
Marco Bonanomi, #20
“For me it will be a completely new challenge, new track, new team and new car to learn. I'm excited and can't wait for the first free practice. Shanghai looks like a very interesting track, with all kinds of corners and a very long back straight. I don't know what kind of weather to expect there but I hope that the air temperature will not be too hot, or else this will affect tyre degradation.”
Greg Taylor, #20
“I really can’t wait to get back for round two as I felt we didn't get a proper shot in Zhejiang to convert on our pace due to the qualifying issues. Shanghai is a new track for me but I have a good simulator model so should be up to speed pretty quickly. The track looks much more suited to the cars also, so let's see how ‘Jackson Storm’ goes this time!”