Algarvio Bernardo Pinheiro makes history with victory in his debut in the European Le Mans Series 2024

Driver helped Team Virage achieve its first podium in this competition

Bernardo Pinheiro – Photo: Autódromo Internacional do Algarve

Algarve driver Bernardo Pinheiro made history by winning the opening race of the European Le Mans Series 2024, in the Le Mans Prototype 3 (LMP3) category, held on Saturday and Sunday in Barcelona, ​​an “unprecedented feat” for a newcomer to this competition.

This victory places Bernardo Pinheiro among the «restricted list» of drivers «who have in their history a victory in their debut race», on a day «in which he not only won in the LMP3, but also decisively contributed to the victory and first Team Virage's podium in the category».

«Sharing the steering wheel of the Ligier with number 8 with Gillian Henrion and Julien Gerbi, the driver from Portimão started the race in second position but after fantastic teamwork it was in first position that he crossed the finish line after four hours of racing where the trio of drivers completed a total of 131 laps and closed the Catalan duel with an eight-second advantage over the runners-up", according to the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve, which will host the final round of this championship on October 19th.



Responsible for the second driving shift, the youngest of the trio – 20 years old last month – took control of the car «with a one second advantage, which he transformed into a 27 second margin over his opponents when he left the cockpit, a difference that proved decisive in obtaining victory».

«We ran a perfect race… no mistakes, no exaggerations and we only stopped for the three stops we had planned. It was a fantastic day and if you had told me in the middle of the week that we could leave Barcelona at the top of the championship and win to open the season I think I would have laughed, but the reality is that we won. What a day it is!”, commented the young Algarve native.

With this victory, Team Virage takes command of the championship that continues on May 5th at the Gallic circuit of Le Castellet and «where the objective will naturally be to win again».