Spa 24: CR Scuderia hour 14 report

Good morning! For those of you who aren't here (and that includes all those members of the press who slinked off to their hotels for a good night's sleep) this is our account of what we got up to during the night. Tim Mullen is in fourth place now...

Good morning! For those of you who aren't here (and that includes all those members of the press who slinked off to their hotels for a good night's sleep) this is our account of what we got up to during the night. Tim Mullen is in fourth place now in no.55 and Rob Bell is in no.56, currently running in eighth.

0118:
Its pitch black at Spa and Rob Bell is running in fourth place in the no.56 car. Tim Mullen is sixth in no.55.

0124:
The CR Scuderia boys suddenly spring into action; Rob Bell has gone off at the exit of Les Combes and hit the Armco pretty hard, damaging a radiator. He arrives at the garage at 0128hrs, driving straight in to let the mechanics get on with the repairs.

0157:
As the team continue to work on the no.56 Ferrari the safety car comes out as the No.51 car is in the wall at Blanchimont.

0202:
A couple of the crew working on no.56 have to stop for a moment as Tim Mullen is pitting in no.55. He's up to fourth place now and running very strongly. The safety car is still out.

The CRS team has a few extra staff for this event. Known as the ‘intervention crew' these guys are on hand for emergencies. It means that any repair work can continue uninterrupted while the other car comes in for its pit stops.

0220:
No.56 is pushed back into the pitlane after some sterling work from the CRS crew. With a new radiator and front wing (and a lot of tank tape!) the car rejoins the race in the hands of Andrew Kirkaldy. A few minutes later the safety car finally comes in and the race is back on.

0230:
"Fooey", CRS' cateri ng chief has just arrived in the garage with fresh supplies to keep us all fed and watered. He's really called Matt but only ever answers to Fooey; a nickname he got because he looks Chinese... Hong Kong Phooey, get it?! Turns out though that he's actually an orphan of the Vietnam War so he's not Chinese at all! It's amazing what you learn when you spend a 24 hour race with them.

0320:
The last hour has been very quiet, thankfully. Tim Mullen has just come in to hand over to Gordon Shedden. After his double stint Tim is now off for a nap before he gets back behind the wheel later today. A few minutes later Kirkaldy pits in no.56, which has been running beautifully since being repaired, and rejoins after a smooth stop.

0400:
Points time! The second batch of points are awarded at the 12-hour mark. This time it's Ferrari no.55 taking the spoils and bagging two points.

0405:
Shedden has been punted of f at Pouhon by a Maserati! Everyone holds their breath as they wait for the Scot to radio in with more information. It's okay, he is back on track and the car is undamaged. Most importantly he is still in fourth place.

0420:
Kirkaldy comes in to hand over to a refreshed Dirk Mueller and heads off for some shut eye.

0430:
Shedden is in and Piccini rejoins the race in the no.55 Ferrari.

0520:
Mueller pits and heads out for part two of his double stint and 15 minutes later Piccini does the same in no.55.

0600:
It's very quiet at Spa (apart from the engine noise of course). All the VIP guests have gone to bed, the media centre is almost empty and even Malcolm Swetnam is taking forty winks (on a sun lounger in the back of the garage). It won't stay like this for long though as the sun is coming up.

0620:
Dirk Mueller is in and Rob Bell heads out in no.56. During his time in the car Dirk discovered that there was a bright side to the earlier accident.

"Since Rob's accident the car is running really well, he said. "We lost a bit of front grip and now the balance is great."

0640:
Tim Mullen heads back out on track relieving Piccini after his double stint.

It's fully light now at Spa. Are there really still almost ten hours to go?

-credit: crscuderia.com

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About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Dirk Müller , Rob Bell , Tim Mullen , Andrew Kirkaldy , Gordon Shedden