Priaulx wants Ford GT to race on without works backing

Andy Priaulx says he would "love" to be part of a semi-works Ford GT programme in future, now that the Blue Oval's factory involvement is coming to an end.

Priaulx wants Ford GT to race on without works backing

Ford Performance boss Mark Rushbrook confirmed to Motorsport.com earlier this month that the American manufacturer, which races the GT in both the FIA World Endurance Championship and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, will no longer continue as a works team in either series beyond the end of the current season of both series.

However, Rushbrook has left the door open to the prospect of the Chip Ganassi and Multimatic teams that operate the cars receiving limited backing to keep the GT on track.

"In these coming months we will be making decisions about what we do with our GT race cars," he said. "Do we continue to support them racing in some way or do we sell them to private individuals to go racing?"

On whether he could see himself racing for a semi-works Ford effort in future, Priaulx told Motorsport.com: “The car’s definitely got another good season or two in it, so I’d love to see it happen.

"This team’s a Pro team, it’s got a Pro driver line-up, so it would be nice to see it do another year.

“I always took the WTCR drive [with Lynk & Co] as ‘as well as’, not ‘instead of [Ford]’. I’ve got a few good races left me in sportscars, actually I’ve been in a really good period these last three years.

“Maybe it’s not a bad idea to quit while you’re in a good place but ultimately, if I had the choice, I’d carry on, definitely.”

Priaulx says GTE could be WEC's top class

Rushbrook also revealed that Ford is looking at how the GT could be adapted into a hypercar for the top class of the WEC, when the new rules come into force for the 2020/21 season.

However, Priaulx believes that GTE Pro - which currently boasts five manufacturers, albeit with Ford and potentially BMW set to exit after this season - could easily act as the WEC's premier category in its own right, with tweaks to boost performance.

"Seeing how competitive GTE Pro is, that could be a premier class. This car could be upgraded, and that could be fantastic for the fans. It’s such a competitive grid, lots of manufacturers.

“I don’t know how many horsepower they can go to, 700 maybe? Then give it carbon brakes, bigger wings, you could be a good five, 10 seconds [a lap] quicker.

"It doesn’t need to be a lot quicker. These GT cars are so fast now, it’s difficult to see the difference between this car and the LMP2 [trackside].

"It has all the right ingredients to be the premier class. All the manufacturers would love that."

Read Also:

Additional reporting by Gary Watkins

#67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT: Andy Priaulx, Harry Tincknell

#67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT: Andy Priaulx, Harry Tincknell

Photo by: JEP / LAT Images

shares
comments
Alonso "100 percent" certain of future WEC return

Previous article

Alonso "100 percent" certain of future WEC return

Next article

Spa WEC: Sirotkin leads SMP 1-2 in first practice

Spa WEC: Sirotkin leads SMP 1-2 in first practice
Load comments
How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge kept Toyota clear Prime

How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge kept Toyota clear

Despite going stride for stride for pace at Portimao, Alpine’s grandfathered LMP1 couldn’t convert pole position into a sustained victory fight against Toyota. And due to rules and car limitations that are set in stone, the French manufacturer will be searching for solutions in its own battle of endurance.

WEC
Jun 14, 2021
Charting 100 world championship sportscar starts for Toyota Prime

Charting 100 world championship sportscar starts for Toyota

This weekend's Portimao 8 Hours round of the FIA World Endurance Championship marks the 100th world champion prototype start for Toyota. Here are the major milestones on the road to three figures since the earliest low-key days of its entry into the Group C arena nearly 40 years ago.

WEC
Jun 12, 2021
The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing Prime

The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing

Most of the column inches after the World Endurance Championship's opener were centred around the relative pace of the Hypercar class and the LMP2s, but there's another question that needs addressing in order for the new division to have a successful future

WEC
May 7, 2021
How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era Prime

How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era

Amid concerns that the new Hypercar class would be upstaged on debut by the spec LMP2 machines at Spa, Toyota delivered the pole and victory that the vast majority of observers expected. But neither car had a clean run, which gave the grandfathered Alpine LMP1 an unexpected shot at glory.

WEC
May 4, 2021
What to expect from sportscar racing's bold new Hypercar era Prime

What to expect from sportscar racing's bold new Hypercar era

A slim field of three cars will be entered in the Hypercar class for the first round of the World Endurance Championship's post-LMP1 age. But there are plenty of reasons for optimism with the new wave of manufacturer entries and competing class philosophies just around the corner

WEC
Apr 29, 2021
How Aston Martin scaled new heights in the Prodrive era Prime

How Aston Martin scaled new heights in the Prodrive era

The 2021 FIA World Endurance Championship kicks off at Spa this weekend, but for the first time since its 2012 inception there will be no factory-run Aston Martins in the GTE Pro class. That's especially notable because as a works entity, the Prodrive era of Aston Martin Racing that began in 2005 has been a success from the very start.

WEC
Apr 27, 2021
How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname Prime

How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname

Sportscar racing lost one of it's greatest talents 20 years ago today when Bob Wollek was knocked from his bicycle prior to the Sebring 12 Hours. The enigmatic Frenchman never won the Le Mans 24 Hours, but many still remember today why 'Brilliant Bob' became a legend

WEC
Mar 16, 2021
How Ferrari's Hypercar project could bolster Leclerc's legacy Prime

How Ferrari's Hypercar project could bolster Leclerc's legacy

Ferrari's planned return to the top category at the Le Mans 24 Hours has further heightened anticipation for the 2023 race. Few concrete details are currently known, but already it has a high-profile superstar angling for involvement, which would make a refreshing change

WEC
Mar 5, 2021