Jean-Philippe Belloc -- nr 1 Larbre Competition Chrysler Viper GTS-R : "It was quite difficult out there today, and I have only done a few laps. I haven't raced here since 1995 ! The pure speed is quite good, but there are still a few minor ...
-- nr 1 Larbre Competition Chrysler Viper GTS-R :
"It was quite difficult out there today, and I have only done a few laps. I haven't raced here since 1995 ! The pure speed is quite good, but there are still a few minor problems. We will continue to work on the set-up - I have full confidence in the team. But the race will be hard."
-- nr 2 Saleen S7-R :
"The car was only ready at 4 am this morning, so today was a shakedown for us. The car seems to be running well, and we can start to work on the set-up."
-- nr 6 Creation Autosportif Lister Storm :
"It wasn't a bad start, we were second early on in the first session, and finished up as fifth, which is quite encouraging. We are slowly getting up to speed. The car has changed a lot since the test day, so to some extent we are starting again from scratch."
-- nr 7 Graham Nash Motorsport Saleen S7-R :
"It's going well, especially as this is a new car which just arrived on Tuesday at 20:30 from the USA. The team worked all night to get it ready, and have done a fantastic job. There are a number of minor problems, which is normal with a new car. We missed part of the first session, so we were very pleased to be on the pace in the second." Mike Newton, his British team-mate, has mainly raced in single-seaters such as Formula Vauxhall followed by over two years in GT competition, in Porsche GT3 cars. "I am in at the deep end here, but it is very exciting to have such a great car to drive. And I am sure we have a good season ahead of us." Thomas added :"Our aim is to finish and score points. And the second car will also be very competitive."
-- nr 14 Lister Storm :
"I'm very happy with our times; we missed the test day, so we were playing catch-up with the rest of the field, and I am quite surprised to be up there. I've never raced here, although I did eight laps in 2001 with the Spanish GT Lister car. I am still learning the track, which is quite difficult, and it's hard to find a clean lap. But the car is going well." Jamie proceeded to set the fastest time in the second session, with a lap of 1:43.334.
Martin Short has joined EMKA Racing for the season, sharing the nr 62 Porsche 996 GT3-RS with Tim Sugden.
"I had a good chance of winning the British GT Championship with my team this year, but I am delighted to have this opportunity to race with Tim and EMKA Racing. I am really glad to be here, and to see what the FIA GT Championship is all about. I have to say 'Wow' ! The paddock here is awesome. This has to be the hardest GT Championship around, and it's a real feather in my cap to be racing here. Tim went out this morning, and after three laps he was third fastest with a 1:49. After that we had a small misfire, but that will soon be sorted out."
-- nr 23 BMS Scuderia Italia Ferrari 550 Maranello :
"I'm quite happy with our progress in the second session. Biagi will do the qualifying this weekend, so I am concentrating on the race set-up, and I did a long run. We changed something for the second session, and it is feeling better, so I am quite confident for the race. I think the Lister and Gollin, in the nr 22 car, will be faster over one lap in Qualifying, but I think we have a good car for the race."
-- nr 23 BMS Scuderia Italia Ferrari 550 Maranello :
"It's very nice to be here; this is a big step forward for me. Formula 3000 was good, but this is a very competitive, professional Championship. I am rather surprised and sorry I did not move here before. But I am still only 26 years old, so I think I can do a good job, especially with this team. They are very professional and showed great potential last year. For the first day, fourth place is not bad, but we still have room for improvement. I am happy to be here. "
-- nr 50 Freisinger Porsche 996 GT3-RS :
"We are working hard; we were the fastest Porsche in the morning, but we were behind the Ferrari Modena cars. This is a brand new car, which has never been driven before, so there are plenty of small things to sort out. I hope it will be OK for the race. Our goal this weekend is to finish in the points; brand new cars always tend to have teething problems. It would have been good to have had the opportunity to test it beforehand, but today was really our test. We might be a bit behind, but our priority is to catch up, and I'm not worried !" In the second session, the car set the best time in the N-GT category, with a lap of 1:47.637.
-- nr 52 JMB Racing Ferrari 360 Modena :
"We were mainly testing the balance of the car this morning, and in the afternoon we will work on the setup and balance for the race. I think and hope we will have a good balance set-up for the race, as it will be very important at this circuit. I really like the track, it has some quick corners and is very good for drivers. My new team-mate Fabrizio de Simone is very good; he drove a BMW in last season's FIA European Touring Car Championship. I think we will form a very balanced team, which is very important."
Marco Zadra, the 2001 FIA Sportscar Champion with BMS Scuderia Italia, has joined Cirtek Motorsport this season, and will be racing the nr 54 Porsche 996 GT3-RS with Mark Mayall.
"We had engine problems this morning when something broke. But I am very pleased to be here, in the FIA GT Championship -- it's what I was looking for ! I have not driven a Porsche 996 GT3-RS before, but it is a big improvement from a Porsche 911 GT2 which I previously drove."
-- nr 74 Eurotech Porsche 996 GT3-RS :
"It's going very well. Mike Jordan has done most of the running, but at least we are in the 1:49 bracket now, which we couldn't manage on the test day. I'm very happy with our progress."
-- nr 77 RWS Yukos Motorsport Porsche 996 GT3-RS :
"We have more experience now, after two full years with the Championship, and I think we have good chances for this season. It is very important for our sponsor Yukos that the team performs well. This is a new car, with more power, and we will have a sequential gear-box for the next race. The Pirelli tyres have also improved, and we are now aiming for a points finish !"
-- nr 88 Team Maranello Concessionaires :
"I got caught out early on and spun, and it took a while to get out of the gravel, so we lost some time. But I am happy with the progress made, and we are continuing to work on the car and pushing forwards towards the race." Tim Mullen, his team-mate, drove for the team towards the end of the British GT Championship last season. "I am looking forward to Sunday's race -- it will be my longest-ever race, and it should be good !"
Walter Lechner Jr
-- nr 99 RWS Yukos Motorsport Porsche 996 GT3-RS :
"We did not go out in the first session as the engine was broken, so we have just started to work now. We were third in N-GT, which isn't bad, but it could be better. There was quite a bit of traffic out there-- we'll have to see how things go in Qualifying."