Minassian To Pescarolo
JC-W To Creation
No Home For Bouchut?

So here’s a very significant change to the driver line-ups for the Le Mans 24 Hours.

‘An agreement has today been reached between Pescarolo Sport and Creation Autosportif for Nicolas Minassian to drive with the French team for the 74th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans’, says the Creation Autosportif statement.

The Mike Jankowski / Ian Bickerton team has the perfect replacement in the #9 Creation 06/H Judd – Jamie Campbell-Walter. Minassian will return to the Creation team for the balance of the Le Mans Series.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for Nic, and a French team, to win Le Mans and we are giving our full support to that objective,” says Mike Jankowski.

“From our part, Nic will of course be very much missed as part of the Creation team at Le Mans. He’s such a central part of our team that it feels a bit like losing an arm! But, this is also good for the sport. With Jamie Campbell-Walter participating in the event, it means another world class driver will now have an opportunity to drive at Le Mans. I don’t see Nic’s absence at all as a weakening of our own driver line up and our own objective remains a top five finish.”

The Pescarolo Sport statement reads as follows: ‘After Jean-Christophe Bouillon’s accident, Henri Pescarolo tried to put together a solid and experienced line up for the No. 16 Pescarolo. At the time of the test day, he ran Christophe Bouchut (who is entered in the LMS with the Imsa Performance Porsche with the same sponsor as Pescarolo Sport, Matmut). It became apparent that, despite his huge talent and impressive CV, the driving of a Sports-Prototype is very different to that of a GT car and there was not enough time between Bouillon’s accident and the 4th June to fit in any training. It will therefore be Nicolas Minassian, a great Prototype specialist, who will join Pescarolo Sport for the 24 Hour event. His Creation Autosportif team has sportingly released him so he can rejoin a team he knows well, from when he was with them in the 2003 and 2004 24 Hours of Le Mans.’

Henri Pescarolo was keen to employ Minassian at Le Mans last year, but the Frenchman was unwilling to switch teams then. With Jamie Campbell-Walter available to drive the Creation entry this year, all sides have been able to reach an agreement this time.

“The Creation team has very sportingly agreed to release Nicolas Minassian and give him the opportunity to try to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans with a team he knows very well and against which he is running in the Le Mans Series,” says Henri Pescarolo.

“Pescarolo Sport is very proud and grateful to Michael Jankowski and Ian Bickerton.

“The whole Pescarolo Sport team will look forward to meeting up again with Nicolas Minassian as one of its main rivals at the wheel of the Creation in the future Le Mans Series races.”

We’ll have to wait and see where that leaves Christophe Bouchut. His replacement (Nelson Piquet Jnr.) in the #62 Russian Age (Team Modena) Aston Martin had an incident early on in his ten lap run (to qualify for the race) during the June 4 test day. The Brazilian did complete his laps though.

 

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