Brno: Sumo Power GT preview

Sumo Power GT team prepares for battle in Brno Fresh from its round two success at Silverstone earlier this month, the Sumo Power GT team now heads to Brno in the Czech Republic for round three of the FIA GT1 World Championship, eager to see if...

Sumo Power GT team prepares for battle in Brno

Fresh from its round two success at Silverstone earlier this month, the Sumo Power GT team now heads to Brno in the Czech Republic for round three of the FIA GT1 World Championship, eager to see if it can deliver a repeat performance this weekend. However, after being rewarded with a victory in only its second event, the team is well aware that this impressive result on its home track will be a tough act to follow.

Driving the Sumo Power GT Nissan GT-R number 22 at Silverstone, Warren Hughes and Jamie Campbell-Walter crossed the finish line in third position. But with penalties applied to the two Aston Martins ahead of them - due to technical infringements - the Nissan drivers were consequently awarded first place and scooped the coveted Tourist Trophy in the process. Although these results are currently provisional, whatever the outcome of this week's FIA hearing its round two performance has given the team a huge boost.

Team-mates Michael Krumm and Peter Dumbreck were not so fortunate at Silverstone. Their race came to an abrupt halt following an overtaking manoeuvre that resulted in terminal suspension damage. Even though this was the first non-finish for the team, lap times showed that Nissan GT-R number 23 is also capable of running at the front of the field and therefore hopes are high for Brno.

With extra weight allocated to the leading cars on a race-by-race basis in an attempt to maintain a balance of performance and therefore close racing, a win at Silverstone will see car 22 run 40 kilos of success ballast this weekend. Therefore, to help prepare for the East European event, Hughes and Campbell-Walter drove their Nissan GT-R in a brief test at Snetterton last week, mainly to continue the development of the car's new Exe-TC suspension.

As a circuit, Brno - or the Masarykring as it was previously known - is steeped in history: Located close to the city that bears its name, the track was first used before WWII as a 31 km street circuit and was the venue for the Czechoslovakian Grand Prix. In 1962 the track was shortened to 14 km and, in the late 1980s, the current purpose-built 5.5 km circuit was opened.

The timetable at Brno sees the GT1 cars initially take to the track on Friday at 09.00 for Free Practice, followed by Pre-Qualifying at 14.00. Qualifying takes place on Saturday at 11.15 with the first race scheduled at 17.30 and the main Championship race getting the green light at 14.15 on Sunday.

Team quotes

Peter Dumbreck - Driver Car 23
"I raced at Brno in 2004 when I was driving in the DTM. It's a flowing track so I think the Nissan GT-Rs will be good to drive there and our strong engine will cope well with the elevation changes. However, as we are likely to be the heaviest car on the grid we need to establish a good set up. Although we showed excellent pace at Silverstone we were unable to get a result, so I'm hoping things will change for us in Eastern Europe."

Michael Krumm - Driver Car 23
"The last time I was in Brno was in 1988, so although I remember having been there before, I don't really recall the circuit. From what I have heard about the track it should suit our cars, so I'm looking forward to continuing our upward trend from Silverstone - even though we didn't finish the main race. It would be good to get into a point-scoring position this time, as we have shown that our car is fast enough to do it."

Jamie Campbell-Walter - Driver Car 22
"After Silverstone there is a buzz running through the whole team. We have raised our own bar, which is a good thing in some ways, but it means that we will be putting pressure on ourselves for another top result. My main concern is the addition of the success ballast as we don't want to go back to the experience we had in Abu Dhabi, although I'm pretty confident that we won't."

Warren Hughes - Driver Car 22
"Following our strong Silverstone showing we have more confidence heading to Brno. I've not been to the circuit before but from what I've seen I think it's a track which could suit our car - although that may be negated by the success ballast of course. Therefore, I'm not completely sure what to expect from the race this weekend, but if the playing field is equal then we have as good a chance as any to fight for a win."

Allen Orchard - Team Manager
"The Silverstone result was really special. In fact it's still sinking in. For the team to achieve this in only its second event is fantastic, but we have to be careful not to lift our expectations too much in advance of this weekend. The addition of success ballast for car 22 is yet another challenge the FIA GT1 World Championship has thrown at us, but we will do our best to rise to it and see if we can achieve another a top result, this time with car 23 as well."

James Rumsey - Team Principal
"Claiming a win so early in the season is an excellent achievement - especially when you consider that the team was only formed in February. Being able to compete at such diverse circuits as Abu Dhabi, Silverstone and now Brno can only accelerate our development programme and, although we are realistic about the results we are likely to achieve in our first year, I think we are quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with."

-source: sumo power gt

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About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Michael Krumm , Peter Dumbreck , Jamie Campbell-Walter , Warren Hughes
Teams Nissan Motorsports