6th April 2012
The Thiriet by TDS team scored its first outright win at Le Castellet making it the one to beat in LM P2. The squad managed by Xavier Combet will take part in its first Le Mans 24 Hours this year.
Although Combet began his career as a driver, he very quickly opted for a management role in motor sport. He became the first team manager of Hexis Racing in Formula Renault after which he was replaced by Philippe Dumas. In 2005, he founded TDS Racing with Jacques Morello, former engineer of LD Autosport (Laurent Daumet’s team). TDS Racing is based in a famous rugby town, Beziers in the south west of France, and earned its reputation in the Eurocup Mégane Trophy winning several teams’ titles.
TDS Racing’s first taste of endurance came as consultant to Daumet’s team in Formula Le Mans. In 2011, the squad from Beziers took the plunge with backing from the Thiriet family well known in the frozen foods’ industry. The driver line-up consisting of Frenchman Pierre Thiriet , Swiss Mathias Beche and Jody Firth from Great Britain was competitive out of the box and won the LM P2 category in the Spa-Francorchamps 1000 km with its Oreca 03-Nissan on only its second outing. Another victory at Estoril gave the team third place in the Le Mans Series LM P2 Teams’ category.
This year, Thiriet and Beche have decided to race as a twosome in the pure endurance tradition, and their choice proved to be the right one at Le Castellet where their consistency among the front-runners made the difference. They now have to find a third driver for the team’s Le Mans 24 Hours debut.
With the cancellation of the Zolder round, TDS Racing will keep the lead in the ELMS until mid-July when they will have to drive home their advantage at Donington: “This cancellation is a tough blow for everybody, but we understand the situation,” says Combet. “We won’t go to Spa as there are no points on offer, and we prefer to have a good test session at Le Mans with our third driver who we’ll announce shortly. In any case we’re delighted to have won at Le Castellet and to have scored twenty-six points including the one for pole.”
What’s in the bag, stays there!
Text: François Hurel – Photo: Christian Vignon
|Mise à jour le Vendredi, 06 Avril 2012 15:43|