Lancia LC2 1985
1985 was a year in which Martini Racing needed to show the potential winning capabilities of the LC2 in order for Lancia to continue to fund a project that had seen limited success thus far. The cars were further revised and were running on Michelin radial tyres. The season opened with an LC2 taking pole position at Mugello by 1.7 seconds ahead of the factory Porsche. Although the pole position car's engine did not last, the other team car finished fourth. For the 1000 km of Monza, the LC2s were nearly four seconds ahead of the closest Porsche in qualifying,and led the race early on. However, while Patrese and Nannini were in third place and on the same lap as the leaders, a tree fell across the track and caused the race to be stopped early. On pole once again at Silverstone, one of the LC2s was in the lead of the race until a wheel bearing failure in the closing laps forced Nannini to pit, forfeiting the lead. Although the LC2s did not take pole at Le Mans, they lead the race early.
Reliability issues again forced the team to drop out of the lead. They eventually finished the race in sixth and seventh places. A fuel pump failure also dropped the team out of contention at the Hockenheimring.
The team was competitive throughout the race at Spa, with the LC2 of Wollek, Patrese, and Mauro Baldi leading the factory Porsche towards the end of the event. The Lancia were leading when the race organisers chose to end the race out of respect for driver Stefan Bellof who had been killed in an accident earlier in the event.Even with the shortened race, Lancia were able to celebrate their first victory over the factory Rothmans Porsche team. The following event, the 1000 km of Brands Hatch, saw the LC2s leading en route to a potential win, only to hit one another and finish third and fourth.Once again unable to challenge Porsche in the championships, Lancia chose not to participate in the final two rounds. However they still earned second in the Teams Championship, just ahead of the privateer Joest Racing Porsche.