Spa-Francorchamps is the location for the penultimate round of the European Le Mans Series for 2017, with titles in all three classes still yet to be decided. After a four-year hiatus, the ELMS returned to the Ardennes this time last year and it was Dragonspeed that took their first and only win to date. The new for 2017 LMP2 cars were thoroughly entertaining during the FIA World Endurance Championship’s visit to the circuit, making the prospect of the three-chassis LMP2 battle very intriguing over four hours of racing. Be sure to follow the full race LIVE on Motorsport.tv.
It’s a Dragonspeed run Oreca that leads the way in the top-class championship, however it’s their G-Drive sponsored #22 car that finds itself in the driving seat having finished no-lower than second so far this season. Their closest rival is the #32 United Autosports Ligier, which was left on the back foot after a first lap incident at Paul Ricard. The winners last time out was a partial season entrant, with Egor Orudzhev and Matevos Isaakyan giving the global-spec Dallara chassis its first win. The SMP Racing duo, though out of the title fight, will be keen to repeat this performance at a track that could favour the slippery Italian cars. LMP3 sees the familiar sight of a United Autosports run Ligier atop the standings, a win last-time out for John Falb and Sean Rayhall putting them in a strong position. Two French teams battle behind the Anglo-American outfit, with Yvan Muller’s #18 Ligier, and Ultimate’s similar car battling it out for second. It was a race to forget for Norma teams at Paul Ricard, with none of the four cars being classified in the results, they will be looking to bounce back in Belgium. Despite concerns of balance of performance, TF Sport lead the way in LM GTE, their Aston Martin leading the JMW Motorsport and Spirit of Race Ferrari’s, the latter coming off two consecutive wins.
Image courtesy of Jakob Ebrey Photography
Over in Spain, the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup heads to the Aragon circuit for its grand finale. After a disastrous round at Misano, long time championship leader Can Oncu has dropped behind Kazuki Masaki as the Japanese rider takes the points lead for the first time. Masaki will be hoping to continue the consistency that he has displayed all season, having only finished off the podium three times, and beat Oncu to the title. With 50 points still on offer, 2016 series runner-up Aleix Viu is also still in the title hunt, though requires either lowly or non-finishes for his competitors. Misano winner Ai Ogura, who sits sixth despite missing four races, will be hoping to round off the season with another strong set of results in the Aragon region of Spain. Tune in for delayed-as-live coverage of both races, and see who comes out on top in the battle to be MotoGP’s next star.
The Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship (CIV) returns after its summer break, coming to you this weekend LIVE from Mugello. Regular MotoGP racer Michele Pirro has dominated the Superbikes class this season to date, taking the win in all eight races. Another victory for the Italian will wrap up the title, with Lorenzo Zanetti currently 91 points in arrears. In the Supersport class the championship battle is a much closer affair, with the top four riders covered by less than 30 points, Ilario Dionisi leading the way. The Moto3 category sees the continued duel between Kevin Zannioni and Nicholas Spinelli reaching its climax as the pair trade championship places race-by-race. In the Pre Moto 3 classification, it’s Thomas Brianti and Matteo Bertelle leading the way, however with two races on the fast, but technical Mugello circuit, the orders could be considerably different by the end of the weekend!
Just three points separate the lead pair as the MSA British Rallycross Championship returns to Lydden Hill. Series veteran Julian Godfrey, and young star Oliver Bennett have been locked in battle all season, with only two race wins not going the way of one or the other. Godfrey had won three on the bounce prior to heading to the home of British Rallycross in Kent, but would he be able to maintain that lead with only two races to go after Lydden, or would Bennett return to the fore? Find out by watching our highlights this weekend!
After running on the short Brands Hatch Indy layout last time out, the Britcar Endurance Championship returns, from the Donington National circuit as the battles hot-up. Witt Gamski and Ross Wylie held an early lead in the series, their Ferrari 458 GTE proving to be more than a match for the field. In the more recent rounds, the gap has steadily come down however, namely the Team HARD Ginetta and ff Corse Ferrari Challenge car posing more of a threat. The Donington entry list saw incredible variety, with machinery ranging from Rob Baker’s Smart ForFour, to Manuel Cintrano and Javier Morcillo’s venerable 17-year-old Mosler MT900R. Be sure to look out for highlights from Donington Park, and see who came out on top.
To round off the weekend, we’ve got two of the most bizarre yet awesome forms of motorsport for your viewing pleasure. The FIM World Sidecarcross Championship comes to a close in Markelo, the Netherlands, as Etienne Bax and Valentin Giraud battle it out for one final time. Last, but by no means least we have highlights from the French Tractor Pulling series’ visit to Bailleul-le-Soc, where 2,000 horsepower plus farming machines go head-to-head in 100-metre, literal drag races.
Friday 22nd September
13:45 - FIM MX2 World Championship replay, Rd 19, Pays de Montbeliard (Race one)
14:45 - FIM MXGP World Championship replay, Rd 19, Pays de Montbeliard (Race one)
15:45 - FIM MX2 World Championship replay, Rd 19, Pays de Montbeliard (Race two)
16:50 - FIM MXGP World Championship replay, Rd 19, Pays de Montbeliard (Race two)
17:55 - NASCAR Xfinity Series, Rd 26, Chicagoland
18:55 - The Flying Lap, Ep 23
20:30 - Mobil 1 – The Grid, Ep 16
22:05 - NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Rd 16, Chicagoland
04:40 - FIA World Rallycross Championship replay, Rd 10, Latvia
Saturday 23rd September
08:45 - Scottish Legends, Rd 6, Knockhill
11:10 - MSA British Rallycross Championship, Rd 6, Lydden Hill
12:10 - Britcar Endurance Championship, Rd 5, Donington Park
12:50 - LIVE Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship, Rd 9, Mugello, Moto3
13:40 - LIVE Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship, Rd 9, Mugello, Superbikes
14:30 - LIVE Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship, Rd 9, Mugello, Supersports
15:20 - LIVE Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship, Rd 9, Mugello, Pre Moto3
16:10 - Delayed-as-live Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup, Rd 7, Aragon (Race one)
18:05 - FIM World Sidecarcross Championship, Rd 14, Netherlands
20:00 - Caterham UK Racing, Rd 7, Rockingham
21:00 - French Tractor Pulling, Rd 7, Bailleul le Soc
22:35 - Australian Supercars, Rd 10, Sandown
Sunday 24th September
10:45 - LIVE European Le Mans Series, Rd 5, Spa Francorchamps
15:20 - Delayed-as-live Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup, Rd 7, Aragon (Race two)
16:05 - LIVE Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship, Rd 10, Mugello, Moto3
16:50 - LIVE Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship, Rd 10, Mugello, Superbikes
17:35 - LIVE Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship, Rd 10, Mugello, Supersports
18:20 - LIVE Italian Motorcycle Road Racing Championship, Rd 10, Mugello, Pre Moto3
21:05 - European Le Mans Series highlights, Rd 5, Spa Francorchamps