As previously revealed by RACER, McLaren Automotive has nominated LMP2 team United Autosports to be its LMGT3 customer team for the category’s debut WEC season in 2024, when the championship shifts to a two-class structure.

Subject to McLaren receiving entries for next season in LMGT3, United will represent McLaren at Le Mans for the British brand’s first appearance in the 24 Hours since 1998.

The Anglo-American team, which is co-owned by Richard Dean and McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown, intends to compete with a pair of 720S GT3 EVOs in the LMGT3 class, which will feature a variety of manufacturers and their nominated partner teams.

Due to the restriction on the number of full-season grid slots – which RACER expects to be 36 cars across Hypercar and LMGT3 – each GT3 manufacturer will be restricted to two cars. This suggests that the other teams were understood were in the mix to represent McLaren next season in the WEC (Garage 59, Team Project 1 and Optimum Motorsport) have missed out on their chance.

However, assuming McLaren is granted entries, this nomination also means that United Autosports’ work to find an avenue to remain in the FIA WEC next season has paid off. It had been forced to find a new home in the championship for 2024 due to the LMP2 class being removed from the FIA WEC’s class structure (though there will be an LMP2 class at Le Mans) to make room for the growth in Hypercar and over-subscribed LMGT3 category.

Until very recently, it appeared that United’s 2024 full-season IMSA effort in LMP2 would serve as its flagship program in 2024. United narrowly missed out on two separate bids to run factory WEC Hypercar programs for next season, leaving Dean and Brown unsure if they would be able to get an GT3 program off the ground in time back in the spr ing.

However, with this solution, United will expand and race in both IMSA and the FIA WEC with high-profile full-season efforts.

“This is a very important project for McLaren on their return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans, so we are extremely proud to have been selected as the team to represent McLaren in LMGT3 at Le Mans and indeed in the WEC,” said United Autosports CEO Richard Dean.

“United Autosports’ experience at Le Mans and in the World Endurance Championship will be invaluable but we know this is a seriously competitive place to be and we are ready for the challenge.”

Michael Leiters, CEO of McLaren Automotive, says that United has already been in contact with the ACO to notify them of its new plans for 2024.

“Motorsport remains a fundamental part of McLaren’s future of performance strategy, and we have long viewed the WEC as a natural fit for demonstrating the performance capabilities of our cars,” he said. “This includes a return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans which is an intrinsic part of our enduring success in motorsport and in particular, the Triple Crown which is unique to McLaren as a supercar manufacturer and racing car constructor.

“We have selected United Autosports, who we feel shares our passion for endurance GT racing as well as the McLaren brand and, like McLaren, has a history of success in motorsport.

“United Autosports has communicated to the Automobile Club de l’Ouest its intent to field two McLaren 720S GT3 EVOs in the 2024 WEC and we hope that their entry will be accepted. And we are looking forward to racing our rivals in the WEC from 2024.”

United Autosports has been competing in the FIA WEC full-time since 2019 and won the FIA World Endurance Championship’s LMP2 class title and celebrated an LMP2 victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans a year later.