Racing Team Nederland completed over 900 miles of running at Motorland Aragon in Spain this week with new partner team TDS Racing and its ORECA 07 chassis.
The Dutch FIA WEC LMP2 team, which is switching from Dallara to ORECA between seasons, will make its public debut with the French LMP2 car at the FIA WEC pre-season Prologue test at Barcelona later this month.
Its three drivers for the 2019/20 season – Frits van Eerd, Giedo van der Garde and Nyck de Vries – all drove the ORECA for the first time at the test. They had all seen the car up close prior to this week though, as RACER spotted the trio undergoing a seat fit in the car during Le Mans race week.
“The first two days with TDS and the Oreca have been very positive,” said team member Mark Koense. “The ambience within the TDS team is pleasant and professional, and the first experience with the ORECA has been positive for all three drivers.
“They all managed to do a large number of laps without any issues. So, these have been two very encouraging and important days as a prelude to the official FIA WEC Prologue test in Barcelona at the end of his month.”
Prior to the Prologue, Racing Team Nederland will unveil the ORECA’s livery for the 2019/20 FIA World Endurance Championship.
The chance for TDS to align with Racing Team Nederland came when its former customer Francois Perrodo decided to move on. The Frenchman will continue to compete in the FIA WEC in 2019/20, returning to the GTE Am class to race with his former team AF Corse.
In the Italian team’s No.83 Ferrari 488 GTE EVO, Perrodo will join forces with Emmanuel Collard (with whom he won the 2016 FIA WEC GTE Am title) and reigning Ferrari Challenge Europe Champion Nicklas Nielsen.
As part of the program, Collard, a former Toyota, Corvette and Cadillac factory LMP driver, will make his 24th Le Mans appearance, after his streak of 23 consecutive starts was broken back in 2018.
AF Corse has also confirmed that its No. 54 Ferrari 488 GTE entry returns with an unchanged line-up next season. Thomas Flohr, Giancarlo Fisichella and Francesco Castellacci will look to build on their impressive campaign in the 2018/19 ‘Super Season’ when they challenged for the class title right until the final race.