HUNTINGDON-based racing car-maker Lola looks set to benefit from cost-capping that should enable more private teams to enter international high-speed races.

HUNTINGDON-based racing car-maker Lola looks set to benefit from cost-capping that should enable more private teams to enter international high-speed races.

Motorsport authorities have applied a €345,000 cap, covering everything except engines, to a season in a class of international Le Mans Series events that should enable private teams to move up from purely national competition.

A package put together by the St Peter's Road company includes a chassis derived from aspects of previous designs and new ones and includes the cost of aero maps, trackside spares supply in the LMS and Le Mans 24 Hours, access to engineers, the test rig and Lola's cutting-edge wind tunnel.

A choice of seven production engines that can be incorporated into the Lola chassis completes the cost for private entries, Lola says.

The company, owned by former racing-driver Martin Birrane, said this week: "Lola is the first constructor to embrace the new for 2011 cost-capped LMP2 regulations that will see a variety of GT production engines available to Lola customers. BMW, Ford, HPD, Jaguar, Nissan and Toyota units will be available for installation in Lola LMP2 sports cars for the 2011 season.

"Lola will also provide the proven Lola high-torque transmission, detachable quick-release rear bodywork and all-carbon bodywork."

There has been significant interest already. "We have been talking to quite a lot of people in GT racing at national level sportscar series who will find it easier to get into the international arena," a spokesman said.

Ironically, last year, Lola came close to returning to Formula 1 racing under rather less stringent cost-capping rules - but the cost would still have been more than 10 times as great, at £30-40million. In the end, other applicants, including Lotus, were preferred.