Statements made by Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo may indicate that the Italian brand could return to a form of racing it's been absent from for 40 years - prototype racing. That's right, LMP1 could see a factory Ferrari team for the first time since 1973, if a report from ESPN F1 is to be believed.

"We have won with the 458 GTE, but I also quite like the idea of racing at Le Mans in the highest category: who knows, maybe one day we can return and win, say thanks and come home," Montezemolo said. "Maybe we should give it some consideration..."

These seemingly idle, off-hand comments might not hold much water, were rumors about Ferrari's return to prototype racing not swirling as recently as August. There's also the fact that the upcoming, 1.6-liter, turbocharged V6 being used for Formula One complies with the Automobile Club de l'Ouest's own LMP1 regulations, according to ESPN. Finally, Ferrari returning to Le Mans might also explain this video of a camouflaged Ferrari LaFerrari testing a new turbocharged engine, which we showed you a few weeks back. There's a fair chance that what we're actually seeing in that video are the early stages of a new Ferrari prototype testing.

Now, we'll admit, there's no shortage of conjecture here, especially regarding the LaFerrari video. But taken as a whole, and with the knowledge that Ferrari rival Porsche will be fielding its own LMP1 team next year, the conditions certainly seem ripe for the prancing horse to return to Le Mans.


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  • 18 Comments
      KaiserWilhelm
      • 1 Year Ago
      The more the merrier! I'm tired of seeing Audi slap everyone silly!
      amcdonal86
      • 1 Year Ago
      Still waiting for Jaguar to come back...
      Ryan Schneider
      • 1 Year Ago
      Does the Ferrari 333 SP not count as a prototype racer since it wasn't built entirely in-house?
        Rob Gomes
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Ryan Schneider
        Prototypes are not about whether or not a manufacturer builds them, but it is a strict classification of vehicle that has its own governing rules for that class. It's why the Deltawing was in the 1-car "Garage 56" class, which is for cars that don't meet any of the existing rulesets.
      Tom Winch
      • 1 Year Ago
      The one big reason Ferrari is considering this is, with the new ACO Lemans rules regarding engines for 2014, Ferrari will be able to run a version of it's V6 F1 engine (power unit in 2014 F1 speak). That would give them almost unlimited testing on their power unit, while the other F1 teams will only be able to test within F1 rules. Plus, with F1 going to budget caps again, they can pour as much money as they want into an LMP1 program, using their testing with basically the same engine as their F1 car as a means to develop the F1 motor and stay under the cap. It would greatly advance engine development and reliability. Getting the power unit to hold up for a 24 hour endurance race is comparable to 5 - 6 F1 race weekends. And if Ferrari goes all in, I could see Mercedes, Renault, & Honda considering jumping in also. Could be in for a new golden age of endurance racing? Audi, Porsche, Toyota, Ferrari, Mercedes, Renault, & Honda all racing LMP-1 programs? I'm smiling and laughing as I write this because I know that has about as much chance of happening as I did winning the Mega Millions yesterday.
        no1bondfan
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Tom Winch
        That would be unbelievably cool. While we are dreaming, let's have these cars race in the Tudor Sports Car Championship as well.
          Tom Winch
          • 1 Year Ago
          @no1bondfan
          Now you're really talking crazy! LOL
        Seig Zeon
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Tom Winch
        I got in to LeMans and F1 because of Gran Tursimo. I use to hate the trying to simulate drive the R8 then I saw my 1st endurance race on Speed and it was Laguna Seca then after awhile LeMans.Been watching ever since. Hearing about the histories of the machines and creating some of the matchups makes me want to see your proposal happen.I gotta say you have to add Peugot in to the mix as well. Should all those companies race that....I can't describe except to say that'd be the hypest thing in motor sports period.
      Dwight Bynum Jr.
      • 1 Year Ago
      Ah, so there will be yet another manufacturer for Audi to beat. Gotcha.
      Tony Levatino
      • 1 Year Ago
      I would bet we will see a new power plant, chassis, suspension, and electronics package. Just as exciting will be what their experience will translate into for the consumer products! Subscribe to the FREE Siempre Ferrari Flipboard Magazine and stay current on the world of Ferrari. http://flip.it/5Wsh3
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