Manor Racing, a team that will move from LMP2 to LMP1 this year, has announced the first driver of its line-up. It will be British driver Oliver Rowland, who will make his endurance debut on the upcoming FIA WEC 2018-19 season.
Manor Racing will be one of the teams that, on the upcoming WEC season, switches from LMP2 to LMP1 to try to fight with Toyota, which remains as the only official manufecturer on the class and will have the only hybird, non-private entries. Today, the team has confirmed its first driver for this season, it will be Oliver Rowland, who will make his series debut.
The former Formula 1 team made its WEC debut in 2016, and competes under the name of CEFC Manor TSR Racing and Chinese flag since 2017. On these two sessions, its results have usually been average, and the team often stands in the middle of the pack, with a best championship result of fifth place.
As for Rowland, his move to WEC is done after finishing third on his second FIA F2 season. Previously, the 25-year old British driver won the Formula Renault 3.5 in 2015 and raced in several series across the United Kingdom and Europe since his single-seater debut in 2010. He has always been suported by Renault, a manufacturer for whom he is the Formula 1 team developement driver. At this moment, Rowland has not said yet if he will race somewhere else than WEC or if he will stay in single-seaters. There is actually the possibility that he stays in F2 for another year or moves to Super Formula.
“Endurance racing is a new experience for me and it will create a fresh challenge, but I am really looking forward to working with the team and driving such an amazing car.” Said Rowland. “Competing in the Le Mans 24 Hours is extremely exciting and it’s something that I’ve always wanted to race in.”
2018-19 WEC season will start the 5th of May with the Spa-Francochamps 6 Hours. This year’s edition of the Le Mans 24 Hours will be the second round of the championship and will be held the 16th and 17th of June.