The Automobile Club de l’Ouest announced Friday the list of automatic invitations for next year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Thirteen cars from 12 teams have been awarded guaranteed entries, based on their success in the American, European or Asian Le Mans Series, as well as the 90th anniversary of the twice-around-the-clock French endurance classic.
Champions in the FIA World Endurance Championship, however, have not received auto invites, as full-season status in the series includes a Le Mans entry.
Audi Sport Team Joest, OAK Racing, Porsche AG Team Manthey and IMSA Performance Matmut headline the list for their class wins at Le Mans, while OAK has secured a second invite thanks to its LMP2 title in the Asian LMS.
AF Corse and Craft Racing AMR have both been awarded entries in GTE-Am for their success in the newly launched Asian championship as well.
European LMS class champions Signatech Alpine and Ram Racing have received invites, along with second place finisher in GTE, Proton Competition, and the Team Endurance Challenge LMPC squad, the latter which must be used in LMP2.
Of U.S. interest, both Muscle Milk Pickett Racing and Risi Competizione were selected by IMSA for its two at-large entries, to compete in the LMP2 and GTE-Pro classes, respectively.
While no official announcements have been made from either squad, it’s understood IMSA’s selection process is influenced by the teams’ interest in participation.
Two-time ALMS P1 champions Pickett announced this week that it will campaign an Oreca 03 Nissan in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship next year, with Risi returning with its Ferrari 458 Italia in GTLM.
Teams have until January to confirm their auto invites. General entry requests close on Jan. 30, with the complete list set to be announced on Feb. 13.Le Mans, Sports Cars