The entry list for the 2023 FIA WEC Rookie Test has been revealed today. It features 19 cars from the three classes, nine of which are in the Hypercar class.
A variety of interesting names are listed in the top class. At Cadillac Racing, Kyffin Simpson, who will compete with Chip Ganassi Racing in IndyCar next season is listed alongside Corvette FIA WEC GTE Am champion Nico Varrone in the No. 2 V-Series.R.
The pair will get their first taste of the LMDh after standout sportscar racing programs in 2023 with. In addition to Varrone’s successes with Corvette in its final year campaigning the C8.R GTE in the FIA WEC, Simpson claimed the 2023 ELMS overall and LMP2 driver titles last weekend in Portimao with Algarve Pro Racing.
There are three Porsche 963s listed, one from each of the three teams.
At Penske, newly crowned DTM Champion Thomas Preining will drive the #5 car alongside a driver who hasn’t yet been named. At JOTA another IndyCar series name is listed, with newly-signed RLL IndyCar driver Pietro Fittipaldi down to steer its No. 38. Proton has Rene Binder and Julien Andlauer entered – Andlauer is one of a number of Pro drivers currently testing at Portimao in Proton’s LMP2 Oreca.
Toyota will run a single GR010 HYBRID for Jose Maria Lopez, current United LMP2 driver Josh Pierson, Ben Barnicoat and Jack Hawksworth. Ferrari too will run a single car, its No. 51 499P is set to turn laps with current Richard Mille AF GTE Am driver Lilou Wadoux and Robert Schwartzman, Scuderia Ferrari’s F1 reserve driver.
Peugeot on the other hand will run both its 9X8s. Stoffel Vandoorne, who has a full time seat with the team in 2024 is listed in both cars, and will share seat time with Mikkel Jensen in the No. 93 and rapid Danish Peugeot Sport junior driver Malthe Jakobsen in the No. 94.
Finally, Vanwall Racing has Esteban Guerrieri down to steer its Vandervell 680 alongside Dutchman Job van Uitert, who is using the test to get his first experience in a Hypercar.
The LMP2 list is five cars strong, with a single ORECA from Prema, United, JOTA, Inter Europol and Team WRT.
Prema’s driver squad is the most intriguing, with AO Racing’s PJ Hyett signed to drive with Multimatic driver Harry Tincknell and French LMP2 ace Paul Loup Chatin.
United will run a car for Daniel Schneider, who is fresh from a full-season LMP2 campaign in the ELMS with the team and Clement Novalak, who also turned laps in this week’s ELMS Rookie Test, will spend the day with Inter Europol. Neither JOTA nor WRT have revealed drivers yet.
In GTE Am, for the final contemporary appearance of the GTE class cars globally, four cars will take to the track. AF Corse will run three of them, with Ferrari 488s for highly experienced gentleman driver Christoph Ulrich, Lorenzo Patrese and Nicola Marinangeli.
For the Corvette C8.R’s swansong, Nicky Catsburg, who was part of the Am title-winning crew and previously confirmed nominee Antoine Doquin will share the car.
“Corvette has already been in touch and they are making sure I come as prepared as possible,” Doquin told RACER. “I will be the last person to drive the Corvette GTE, which is such an amazing opportunity. I will have to learn the car, as I haven’t tested a GTE before.”
In Bahrain, Doquin will get a minimum of 30 laps and spend the week embedded with the team, something he is really looking forward to.
“I will spend the whole week with the team to learn more,” he added. “It will be my first WEC meeting as part of a team. I will be with them, listening to the radio, the debriefs, to prepare me for the Sunday.”
The FIA WEC Rookie Test is set to take place the day after the season-closing 8 Hours of Bahrain next month.