Asian Le Mans Series

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Asian Le Mans Series
AsianLMS logo.jpg
CategoryEndurance racing
Inaugural season2009
Prototype ClassesLMP2, LMP3
GT ClassesGT
Tyre suppliersMichelin
Drivers' championLMP2:
Republic of Ireland Charlie Eastwood
Turkey Ayhancan Güven
Turkey Salih Yoluç
France François Heriau
Spain Xavier Lloveras
France Fabrice Rossello
Netherlands Nicky Catsburg
United States Chandler Hull
United States Thomas Merrill
Teams' championLMP2: Luxembourg DKR Engineering
LMP3: France Graff Racing
GT: Germany Walkenhorst Motorsport
Motorsport current event.svg Current season

The Asian Le Mans Series (AsLMS)[1] is an Asian sports car racing endurance series created by the Automobile Club de l'Ouest (ACO) and based in Asia. It is the successor to the defunct Japan Le Mans Challenge which folded in 2007 after its second season. The ACO aims to attract teams and drivers from Asian countries.

A teasing race was to be held in Shanghai, China on November 1–2, 2008 but was later cancelled. The inaugural season's race, the 2009 1000 km of Okayama, was held on 30 October and 1 November 2009 at Okayama, Japan with one 500 km race per day. It was the only event of the inaugural season. A second Asian Le Mans Series event, scheduled for the Shanghai International Circuit, China, on 7 and 8 November was cancelled by the ACO due to economic circumstances.[2] The winning teams in each of the four categories (LMP1, LMP2, GT1 and GT2) earned automatic invitations to the 2010 24 Hours of Le Mans. The series was relaunched for the 2013 season with an announcement at the 2012 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Former earlier logo of the Asian Le Mans Series used from 2009 until the end of the 2015/16 series season


Following the end of the All Japan Sports Prototype Championship (JSPC) in 1992 there was no major endurance series involving sports-prototypes in Asia, although there was a grand tourer championship in the All Japan Grand Touring Car Championship (JGTC), the predecessor to today's Super GT series.

Plans for a new endurance championship were initially conceived by Don Panoz and backed by the ACO in 2000 with plans for an Asian-Pacific Le Mans Series, modeled after his American Le Mans Series and planned European Le Mans Series for 2001. Two previews of this event were held. The 1999 Le Mans Fuji 1000km at the Fuji Speedway in Japan combined Le Mans cars with JGTC machines for automatic entries to the 2000 24 Hours of Le Mans. This idea was followed by the American Le Mans Series with the 2000 Race of a Thousand Years race at the Adelaide Street Circuit in Australia. These two events served as a precursor to the planned APLMS series, and at the time of the creation of ELMS, Don Panoz announced his intention to hold an exhibition APLMS race at Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia in late 2001.

However, the European Le Mans Series suffered from a lack of entrants during its debut season and was eventually canceled. Don Panoz decided that the APLMS would likely have even less interest. Thus the APLMS exhibition race and all plans for an Asian series were scrapped.

The ACO attempted to develop their own championship modeled on their own Le Mans Endurance Series in 2006 with the development of the Japan Le Mans Challenge, overseen by the Sports Car Endurance Race Operation (SERO). It too lacked competitors and was canceled after its second season.

In 2009, a reborn Asian Le Mans Series held an inaugural event in Okayama, Japan with two 500 km races. A 1000 km race in Zhuhai, China, was held as part of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup in 2010, and it was also part of the Asian Le Mans Series.

At the 2012 24 Hours of Le Mans the ACO announced the revival of the Asian Le Mans Series for the 2013 series.[3] The format will be run very similarly to the European Le Mans Series, with the ACO expecting around 16-18 cars for the first relaunched season. However, only 8 cars showed up for the first race of the season, making it the smallest ever grid in ACO sanctioned racing. This record was broken a year later when only six cars started the first race of the 2014 season at Inje.

The ACO further announced that cars running under the GT300 regulations in the Japanese Super GT series would be eligible to enter in the Asian Le Mans Series' GTC class, with organisers from both series working together to create calendars that would allow GT300 teams to compete in both championships.[4]

Following the end of the 2014 season, the ACO took over as the organizer for the series from the S2M Group. A primary issue that supported the takeover included low car counts for the season which prompted the cancellation of a scheduled round in Thailand and limited the series to grow while only in its second year. Plans for 2015 include a three-race calendar to begin later in the year around September then expand to five rounds in 2016 with the first race in the spring. One round will be held on the same weekend as the FIA World Endurance Championship, similar to the double-headers it shares with the European Le Mans Series and the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Class structure will remain unchanged.

In October 2016, the Asian Le Mans Series announced a partnership with the GT Asia Series. It includes a new Michelin Asia GT Challenge, which is a combined classification for GT3 teams, where the winner will get an invitation to the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

In January 2020, the Asian Le Mans Series hosted its first race outside the continent of Asia at Tailem Bend Motorsport Park, Australia known as the 4 Hours of The Bend.

In the 2021 season from February 13th-20th, the series marked its first venture to the Middle East racing in the United Arab Emirates for two 4 Hours of Dubai races at the Dubai Autodrome followed by two 4 Hours of Abu Dhabi races at the Yas Marina Circuit. Since then, the championship have been run entirely within the country.


The relaunched Asian Le Mans series has very similar rules to the European Le Mans Series with a total of four classes: LMP2, LMPC, GTC, and GTC Am.

Compared to its running in 2009 the LMP1 and LMGT1 categories are dropped. The GTC class is opened to GT3 category cars in addition to Super GT series GT300 teams. All classes follow a "Pro-Am" categorization with each car requiring at least one amateur-rated driver, and each car must have at least one driver of Asian nationality. The season champions of LMP2 and GTC receive an invitation to the following year's 24 Hours of Le Mans. Michelin is the sole tire supplier for the series.

In the 2013 season the SGT class was opened exclusively for all teams in GT300 class of Super GT. It used the same vehicle regulation of Super GT and counted towards the GT300 championship. This class only participated at the 2013 3 Hours of Fuji.

On 20 April 2013, changes were made to the class structure for grand touring. GTC remained open to FIA GT3 category cars while GTC Am was introduced as a trophy to gentleman drivers and teams that competed from Lamborghini Super Trofeo, Porsche Carrera Cup Asia, Ferrari Challenge Asia-Pacific, Audi R8 LMS Cup Asia, and Lotus Cup Asia. The class was renamed GT Am the following season.

For the 2014 season, Group CN was admitted into the series replacing the entry-less LMPC class from 2013. The grand tourer classes including LM GTE, GTC, and Super GT300 were merged into a single GT class. Driver requirements to include one driver from Asia were expanded to include any nationality from the Australasia region.

In 2015 the season format was changed to a winter one spanning two calendar years. The LMP3 class was added and the GT class was split in GT and GT Am.

In the 2016–17 season the GT Cup class replaced GT Am.

In the 2017–18 season CN was dropped and GT Am was back.

In the 2018–19 season the new LMP2 cars homologated after the ACO's 2017 regulations were eligible for the LMP2 class and the earlier LMP2 cars were eligible for the new LMP2 Am class.

The GT Cup class would be dropped in the 2019–20 season.

ACO's Generation II 2020 Regulation Built LMP3 Cars from manufacturers such as Ligier, ADESS, Ginetta & Duqueine Engineering were now eligible in the series starting in the 2021 season. The calendar would also return to an annual format instead of spanning two calendar years since back in the 2015-16 season due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

In the 2023 season of the Asian Le Mans Series, a bronze pro-am rated driver would be mandatory in each class for the first time. Therefore the LMP2 Am & GT Am Classes would officially be dropped.



Season Category
2009 LMP1 LMP2 GT1 GT2
France Christophe Tinseau
Japan Shinji Nakano
France Jacques Nicolet
France Matthieu Lahaye
Monaco Richard Hein
Japan Atsushi Yogo
Japan Hiroyuki Iiri
Germany Dominik Farnbacher
Denmark Allan Simonsen
China David Cheng Japan Naoki Yokomizo
Japan Akira Iida
Japan Shogo Mitsuyama
Italy Andrea Bertolini
Italy Michele Rugolo
Australia Steve Wyatt
2014 LMP2 CN GT
China David Cheng
China Ho-Pin Tung
Macau Kevin Tse Taiwan Jun San Chen
Japan Tatsuya Tanigawa
2015–16 LMP2 LMP3 CN GT GT Am
Switzerland Nicolas Leutwiler China David Cheng
China Ho-Pin Tung
Singapore Denis Lian
Switzerland Giorgio Maggi
Singapore Weng Sun Mok
United Kingdom Rob Bell
Japan Keita Sawa
Hong Kong Paul Ip
2016–17 LMP2 LMP3 CN GT GT Cup
Italy Andrea Roda United Kingdom Nigel Moore
United Kingdom Phil Hanson
Japan Kenji Abe
Japan Akihiro Asai
China Qin Tianqi
Thailand Tira Sosothikul
Thailand Medhapan Sundaradeja
Italy Michele Rugolo Japan Takuma Aoki
Japan Shinyo Sano
2017–18 LMP2 LMP3 GT GT Am GT Cup
United Kingdom Harrison Newey
Monaco Stéphane Richelmi
France Thomas Laurent
United States Guy Cosmo
United States Patrick Byrne
Finland Jesse Krohn
Taiwan Jun-San Chen
Italy Max Wiser
China Weian Chen
New Zealand Will Bamber
New Zealand Graeme Dowsett
2018–19 LMP2 LMP2 Am LMP3 GT GT Am GT Cup
United Kingdom Paul di Resta
United Kingdom Phil Hanson
China Kang Ling
United Kingdom Darren Burke
Slovakia Miro Konopka
Poland Jakub Smiechowski
Germany Martin Hippe
United Kingdom James Calado
Japan Kei Cozzolino
Japan Takeshi Kimura
Italy Max Wiser France Philippe Descombes
Denmark Benny Simonsen
2019–20 LMP2 LMP2 Am LMP3 GT GT Am
United States James French
Russia Roman Rusinov
Netherlands Léonard Hoogenboom
United States Cody Ware United Kingdom Colin Noble
United Kingdom Tony Wells
Brazil Marcos Gomes China Li Lin
China Zhiwei Lu
2021 LMP2 LMP2 Am LMP3 GT GT Am
Austria René Binder
Austria Ferdinand von Habsburg
China Ye Yifei
Greece Andreas Laskaratos
United States Dwight Merriman
United Kingdom Kyle Tilley
United Kingdom Wayne Boyd
Venezuela Manuel Maldonado
Finland Rory Penttinen
Germany Ralf Bohn
Germany Alfred Renauer
Germany Robert Renauer
Germany Christian Hook
Finland Patrick Kujala
Germany Manuel Lauck
2022 LMP2 LMP2 Am LMP3 GT GT Am
United Kingdom Matt Bell
United Kingdom Ben Hanley
United States Rodrigo Sales
Switzerland David Droux
Switzerland Sébastien Page
France Eric Trouillet
France Christophe Cresp
France Antoine Doquin
France Steven Palette
United Kingdom Ben Barnicoat
United States Brendan Iribe
United Kingdom Ollie Millroy
Canada Mikaël Grenier
United Kingdom Ian Loggie
Germany Valentin Pierburg
2023 LMP2 LMP3 GT
Republic of Ireland Charlie Eastwood
Turkey Ayhancan Güven
Turkey Salih Yoluç
France François Heriau
Spain Xavier Lloveras
France Fabrice Rossello
Netherlands Nicky Catsburg
United States Chandler Hull
United States Thomas Merrill


Season Category
2009 LMP1 LMP2 GT1 GT2
France Sora Racing France OAK Racing/Team Mazda France Japan JLOC Germany Hankook Team Farnbacher
France OAK Racing Japan Team Taisan Ken Endless Italy AF Corse
2014 LMP2 CN GT
France OAK Racing Hong Kong Craft-Bamboo Racing Taiwan AAI-Rstrada
2015–16 LMP2 LMP3 CN GT GT Am
Switzerland Race Performance China DC Racing Singapore Avelon Formula Singapore Clearwater Racing Hong Kong KCMG
2016–17 LMP2 LMP3 CN GT GT Cup
Portugal Algarve Pro Racing United Kingdom Tockwith Motorsports Finland PS Racing Hong Kong DH Racing Japan TKS
2017–18 LMP2 LMP3 GT GT Am GT Cup
China Jackie Chan DC Racing X Jota China Jackie Chan DC Racing X Jota Taiwan Fist Team AAI China Tianshi Racing Team New Zealand Team NZ
2018–19 LMP2 LMP2 Am LMP3 GT GT Am GT Cup
United States United Autosports Slovakia ARC Bratislava Poland Inter Europol Competition Japan Car Guy Racing China Tianshi Racing Team Hong Kong Modena Motorsports
2019–20 LMP2 LMP2 Am LMP3 GT GT Am
Russia G-Drive Racing with Algarve United States Rick Ware Racing United Kingdom Nielsen Racing Taiwan HubAuto Corsa China Astro Veloce Motorsport
2021 LMP2 LMP2 Am LMP3 GT GT Am
Russia G-Drive Racing United Kingdom Era Motorsport United Kingdom United Autosports Germany Precote Herberth Motorsport Germany Rinaldi Racing
2022 LMP2 LMP2 Am LMP3 GT GT Am
United Kingdom Nielsen Racing France Graff Racing Spain CD Sport United Kingdom Inception Racing with Optimum Motorsport Germany SPS Automotive
2023 LMP2 LMP3 GT
Luxembourg DKR Engineering France Graff Racing Germany Walkenhorst Motorsport


  1. ^ "Rookies Guide to Sportscars: The Asian Le Mans Series". TheInstallationLap. 2023-02-08. Retrieved 2023-02-13.
  2. ^ Series Update (2009-08-04). "Asian Le Mans Series: The latest news". Archived from the original on 2009-08-09. Retrieved 2009-08-04.
  3. ^ John Dagys Update (2012-06-14). "LE MANS: Asian Le Mans Series Relaunched". Archived from the original on 2012-06-18. Retrieved 2012-06-14.
  4. ^ "Super GTs will be eligible for the inaugural Asian Le Mans Series in 2013". Haymarket Publications. 20 August 2012. Archived from the original on 23 August 2012. Retrieved 21 August 2012.

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