Tatiana Calderón’s European Le Mans Series campaign continues this weekend with a night race at the Motorland Aragón track in northeastern Spain.
The Colombian driver will once again share the #19 Oreca 07 LMP2 car with Team Virage teammates Ian Rodriguez and Alexander Mattschull for the third round of the season, as the trio look to build on an encouraging showing last month at Paul Ricard.
Tatiana and her colleagues were unfortunate to be denied the chance of a podium finish in the ultra-competitive LMP2 Pro/Am division, as the unlucky timing of a safety car intervention and then radio communication issues in the closing stages, led the team to be unclassified at the finish.
Matters should be helped by bronze-rated Mattschull returning to the team for a second weekend in succession in order to build on a strong debut with the team after being drafted to replace injured Rob Hodes.
Tatiana will be making her race debut at Aragon, although she is familiar with the 5.345km track - a new addition to the ELMS calendar this season - from testing. To add an extra layer of challenge, the four-hour race will be held partially at night, with the start slated for 6pm on Saturday before concluding at 10pm, a little over an hour after sunset.
As per the last race at Paul Ricard, 11 cars will battle in the LMP2 Pro/Am class as part of a 42-car field. Track action begins on Thursday with the opening practice session, with a first taste of night time conditions slated for Friday before qualifying and the race on Saturday.
Tatiana Calderón: “I'm very excited to be back racing in Spain. It will feel like another home race to me, but this time we race at night - which I'm really glad about because it’s really hot in Spain at the moment! It’s also the first time for the series racing at Aragon, which is a tough and technical layout with many blind corners. It will be a challenge, especially with the traffic and the temperature change from the day to the night. But I enjoy the track and every time I’ve worked with the team we’ve started to understand each other better. The pace in the previous race at Paul Ricard was really encouraging, also in Barcelona, so hopefully we can put it all together this weekend. We have Alex [Mattschull] for the rest of the season, so it should be more natural and I look forward to seeing what we can achieve together.”
4 HOURS OF ARAGON TIMETABLE
Thursday August 24
Free Practice 1 - 2.55pm
Friday August 25
Free Practice 2 - 8.30pm
Saturday August 26
Qualifying (LMP2) - 11.15am
Race - 6pm
Image courtesy of @juledechezsmithenface