Tatiana Calderón will be back in FIA World Endurance Championship action this weekend as she tackles the second round of the season, the 8 Hours of Portimao.
The Colombian will be reunited with her Richard Mille Racing teammates Beitske Visser and Sophia Floersch as they aim for another strong result at the wheel of the team’s Signatech-run Oreca 07-Gibson in the WEC’s ultra-competitive LMP2 class.
Following a season of racing in the European Le Mans Series, Tatiana stepped up to the WEC together with the Richard Mille Racing team for this year, making her full-time debut in the series last month at Spa-Francorchamps. She and her teammates finished eighth in class on that occasion, a result on which they will be keen to improve at Portimao.
Having hosted the ELMS season finale last year, the Algarve-based Portimao facility is a track Tatiana already knows well. However, she will be tackling it for the first time with Goodyear tyres, as well as reduced power and downforce levels imposed on the LMP2s for 2021 to ensure adequate class separation with the all-new Le Mans Hypercars.
With just this weekend’s eight-hour race and one more six-hour race at Monza next month to go before the Le Mans 24 Hours in late August, Tatiana acknowledges this weekend’s event offers a vital chance for the Richard Mille Racing team to gain valuable experience and build confidence ahead of the biggest race of the sportscar racing year.
Tatiana Calderón: “It’s been a long wait since Spa, I’m really looking forward to getting back in the LMP2 car this weekend. Portimao will present a very different challenge with much warmer weather, and a layout that will be more challenging with the low-downforce configuration. It will be very tricky for sure, as it’s a very twisty track with a lot of elevation change. We’ve been working hard with the team to understand our lack of performance compared to the top cars at Spa, and we have a lot of things to try. It will be important to understand more the car and the tyres, particularly in the hot conditions. It will be important to stay out of trouble and continue to build our momentum looking towards Le Mans.”
PORTIMAO WEEKEND TIMETABLE
(All times GMT and subject to change.)
Friday June 11
Free Practice 1 – 15:15
Saturday June 12
Free Practice 2 – 09:35
Free Practice 3 – 14:00
Qualifying (LMP) – 18:20
Sunday June 13
Race – 11:00