The Lola B2K/40, a rising star in the SR2 and LMP675 categories
Smaller, lighter but also more affordable than its big sister, the Lola B2K/10, the Lola B2K/40 was developed by Lola Cars International for the 2000 season, specifically for the SR2 class. Initially designed for the Sports Racing World Cup (SRWC) and the Grand-American Road Racing Championship, many Lolas were subsequently converted to meet the LMP675 and LMP2 class rules. The B2K/40 was ultimately replaced by the Lola B05/40 in 2005.
The „light“ and more affordable version of the Lola LMP900
With a less prominent and more rounded front section than the B2K/10 that was designed for the LM P900 class, the B2K/40 also stands out by its narrower wings compared with the wide curved wings of the B2/ 10. The cooling air intakes are located on either side of the cockpit, whereas on the B2K/10, they are placed further back, on the car’s flanks. The frame was made from aluminium honeycomb panels. Although being more basic, the B2K/40 is nonetheless a car tailored for high speeds.
For the power unit, Lola used a Nissan V6 3.0 Litre V6 engine modified by the Advanced Engine Research (AER) firm. Some private teams used other engines. We could thus see Lola B2K/40s with Mazda, Judd V8, Ford turbo or Porsche Flat 6 engines. The gearbox was the sequential Lola Hewland 6-speed box that is to be found in all of Lola’s prototypes from 1999 to 2005.
The Lola B2K/40 beat everyone in the junior (SRPII and LMP2) categories
The Lola B2K/40s’ racing debut took place during the 2000 season, with cars to be seen racing both in the USA and Europe. Multimatic Motorsports won the LMP675 class with a B2K/40 at the 2000 Le Mans 24 Hours race, the very first victory of a Canadian team on the famous track.
At the same time, the Archangel team won the title in the Grand-Am SR2 category. In 2001, this was the championship that most of the B2K/40s went for. The Snow/Schumacher, Archangel, TRP, Northstar Racing, Porschehaus Racing, Multimatic Motorsports and Rand Racing teams all entered Lola B2K/40s. 16 models were produced.
The B2K/40 #HU07 being offered for sale here was the last to be built in 2000, the car’s first year. It was delivered in October 2000.
In 2001, the 24 Hours of Daytona ended with a place on the podium! For its first appearance in the Florida classic, the Lola B2K/40 HU07 entered by the Northstar Racing team finished a long way behind in the overall standings but third in its category. The race was won by a Corvette C5-R, in pouring rain. The winner of the SRPII category was also a Lola B2K/40 (entered by Archangel Motorsport Services, finishing 13th overall) while a Kudzu DLM Mazda finished second (20th overall).
At the end of the season, Rand Racing took possession of the car … and won! It was in Daytona again, but this time in a three-hour race, with Lazzaro winning.
In 2002, Rand Racing teamed up with Risi Competizione to enter the Lola B2K/40 in Grand-Am racing. Its first outing was a success, with a class victory at the 24 Hours of Daytona. Chassis HU07 led the category from start to finish, without letting a single opponent take the lead on any lap. HU07 was the best Lola at the finish, ahead of the Lola B2K/10 Porsche entered by Champion Racing, and driven by Wallace / Maassen / Haywood / Luhr!
Two further victories were to follow, at Homestead and Fontana, with the HU07 winning the first three rounds of the 2002 season. Then its sister car won in Phoenix, while No. 8 itself had engine problems. At Watkins Glen, in a demanding 6-hour race, victory again went to the B2K/40 #HU07. The Kelleners / Borcheller / Lazzaro trio finished in second place, while Jönsson / Franchitti / Rand driving the sister car completed the podium. It was a perfect weekend for the Rand Racing / Risi Competizione team.
There were again engine problems at the Daytona round, but with a third place in the category all the same … before three new victories at Watkins Glen, Virginia International Raceway and Daytona in the SRPII class.
The team achieved nine wins over the season, including seven for HU07! When the victory in the last round of the 2001 Grand-Am season is added, that meant a series of 10 victories for the team. In total, over the 2002 season, the team’s two Lolas completed 94% of all possible laps in the SRPII class, a truly impressive statistic.
In 2003, the regulations were changed, bringing the appearance of the first generation of Daytona Prototypes (DP). The cars in the SR2 category thus saw their performances reduced. Bill Rand decided to change cars and bought two MG Lola EX257s for the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) .
B2K/40 #HU07 was then adapted for the LMP2 class and its engine-size progressed from 3 litres to 3.4 litres. One final race put the finishing touch to the car’s racing career. Bill Rand entered it for the 12 Hours of Sebring 2004. The race was dominated by the Audi R8s (with a hat trick) while the LMP2 class was won by a Lola B2K/40 entered by Miracle Motorsports, finishing 23rd overall). Chassis HU07 finished second in its class, producing a 100% Lola B2K/40 podium, with the Intersport Racing car coming third.