Dalziel: I'll be back to win 15 | 06 | 2015

    SCOT RYAN DALZIEL headed back to his Florida base, via a stopover in Paris, vowing to return to the Le Mans 24-Hours next year and win.

    The 33-year-old Wishaw-born racer— who won the ultra-competitive LMP2 title at Le Mans in 2012, the same year he was crowned FIA LMP2 World Champion — debuted his all-new ESM Ligier at this year's race.

    And though the Scot, and team, achieved his primary goal of reaching the finish of the world's most gruelling endurance race — both cars finished in the top 10 LMP2 — his ultimate goal is to win.

    "Yeh, our plan is definitely to come back next year and win," Rolling Stone-backed Dalziel, the only Scot to race at Le Mans this year, said. "This year we wanted to make sure both cars finished and we did, which is a huge achievement for the team.

    "Remember, we only took delivery our two cars last month, and Le Mans was only their second race. So to achieve what we've achieved is pretty remarkable.

    "For most of our crew, and four of our six drivers, this was their first experience of Le Mans. And to be honest, nothing prepares you for the gruelling physical and mental challenge of this race. You have to experience it.

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    "On my No30 car, we had a broken weld in the oil tank, something out of our control. But the guys fixed it and we were back on our way."

    But there was an early scare for Dalziel's team-mate, former IndyCar racer, Scott Sharp, after he took over from the Scot. The American got caught out at the fast right-hander at Tertre Rouge, going through the gravel before making contact with the tyre wall.

    After teasing the car back on to the track, and suspecting it had been badly damaged, he managed to get it back to the pits.

    "I drove back thinking everything on it must be bent or broken," Sharp admitted, "but Ligier said they had built a tank in a car, and they sure did because

    "We put new tyres on and went back on-track. It was a little scary at the moment, but everything worked out okay."

    Dalziel, who will next drive the car at the next round of the World Endurance Championship, the inaugural 6 Hours of Nürburgring in Germany on August 28-30, knows the team will build from their French experience.

    "I’m looking forward to Nurburgring now," he stated. "I think we'll surprise a few people once we get there and get some miles under our belts with these Ligiers.

    "Sure it was good to take the chequered flag at Le Mans, but we’ll be back next year and have a solid shot at winning this thing."

    Related: EXCLUSIVE — Interview with Loic Duval after high-speed crash

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    Jim McGill


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