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Indian driver Chandhok makes Le Mans return


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Le Mans (France), April 12 (IANS) Indian racing driver Karun Chandhok confirmed that he will return for the historic Le Mans 24 hours race for the third time.

India's only driver to compete at the iconic endurance race, Chandhok first took part at Le Mans in 2012. The race is widely regarded as part of the Triple Crown of motorsport along with the Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix and the Indianapolis 500.

Chandhok will return to the La Sarthe circuit June 14-15 with the same Murphy Prototypes that he raced with last season and will race the LMP2 Nissan V8-powered Oreca 03. Last year, Karun and the team came back from an electrical issue, that dropped them to second last place, to finish sixth.

"I am very excited to head back to Le Mans for a third time. It’s such a hard event to do with over 5,000 km of racing through the night but the satisfaction of doing well there in front of such a huge crowd is tremendous. There are a lot of guys who raced in F1 coming over to sportscar racing like Mark Webber, Bruno Senna, Giancarlo Fisichella, Sebastien Buemi and Anthony Davidson," Chandhok said.

"It will be good to return to Le Mans with the Irish team Murphy Prototypes as we raced together last year and were very competitive but unlucky. We know what we have to do to get the maximum from the car but we need a bit of luck and hopefully the luck of the Irish will be with us."

Team owner Greg Murphy said: “Murphy Prototypes are absolutely delighted to have Karun back with us again. It is a huge compliment to the team that a driver of Karun's experience and background has decided to drive for us at the legendary Le Mans 24 Hour race.

"Karun brings speed, consistency and unbelievable professionalism. He doesn't have an ego which is really critical when you have to share a car with two other drivers and be a real team player."

The 13.6 km circuit winds through the French countryside with cars touching top speeds of 315 km/h. The race distance is more than 5,000 km and boasts of one of the world’s largest live audience for a sporting event with over 280,000 people.

Chandhok also confirmed that he will participate in next weekend's Silverstone race as part of the European Le Mans Series.

"It will be great to get back to racing at Silverstone next weekend. It is the ideal way to prepare for our 2014 Le Mans assault. The team have been doing a great job over the winter and I will look forward to working with them closely again," said Chandhok.

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