A Radical SR9 chassis will return to the American Le Mans Series starting next race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Ian Dawson's P2 class Project Libra entry will resume for the first time since 2010, with drivers Andrew Prendeville, Rusty Mitchell and a third driver to be named later, and a Roush Yates powerplant.
Although the Roush Yates engine was announced prior to the 2011 season, Monterey will mark its racing debut. The Ford-based V6 twin-turbo 3.2-liter engine is one of a new breed of engines is designed to achieve comparable power but better fuel efficiency and reduced greenhouse emissions than V8 engines.
The team intends to compete in all eight remaining races on the 2012 schedule with the car, which will use Dunlop tires.
“After four days of testing covering 2,000 miles of trouble-free running following a joint development program with Roush Yates, I am happy to be going racing,” said Dawson, team owner and engineer. “We at long last can see that we can enter the balance of the 2012 American Le Mans Series season with a credible package to build on and with a new engine that we believe will be a strong contender from the outset.
“The Radical chassis has been fully upgraded and has given us a solid platform to work from,” he added. “The package now represents a unique and varied option for the P2 class, which is now seeing welcome growth.”
The team ran sporadically in 2010 with Prendeville, a handful of different co-drivers and a Nissan engine, but did not complete a single race due to mechanical problems. Prendeville (RIGHT) and Mitchell both have several ALMS starts to their names, and also have prior experience in the Firestone Indy Lights Series.
The entry means there should be at least five P2 cars on the grid at Mazda Raceway, and if Dempsey Racing's Lola Judd is built and sorted in time, the number could grow to six. Dawson said the team has a second chassis, as well, which he hopes to run later in 2012.
This current Radical has tested in North Carolina for several days and will undergo two more days of testing there before leaving for California.