First LMES Victory for Convers Team
The Convers Team has won the Nurburgring 1000kms, the fourth race of the Le Mans Endurance Series. The win, by Darren Turner and Robert Bell in the Aston Martin DBR9, is the Russian team's first in the series and a valuable one in terms of the teams' and drivers' standings. The blue Aston Martin crossed the line ninth overall and a lap clear of the nearest GT1 class competition to also record Aston Martin's first ever victory in the Le Mans Endurance Series.
Bell, who was making his endurance racing debut in the car he had never driven before, and Turner, drove a faultless race to take victory from the two championship rivals of Alexey Vasiliev and Christophe Bouchut, who had a difficult race in the team's Ferrari 550 Maranello on their way to fifth in class.
"I received the call on Tuesday, the package was put together very late and it was a bit surprising that we won, really," said Bell, whose only problem during the race was a slightly high fuel consumption rate which meant a slower final stint. "The car didn't miss a beat; it was reliable throughout."
Turner added: "This was Rob's first race in sports cars and you would never have known it, the performance he gave. The job he did today was fantastic. We managed to rattle off the laps towards the end and the team did a great job in the pit stops."
The Ferrari crew ran competitively in the early stages, but Alexey Vasiliev lost time when a rear tyre punctured and the Russian was forced to make an extra pit stop. He also struggled with chronic understeer during both of his stints which cost further time.
"That was a hard race," said Cirtek team owner Rob Schirle. "They are one point ahead now, so it is all to play for in Istanbul in November. Obviously for the championship we wanted the Ferrari to win, but the Aston took valuable points off the other teams, and that is what they were there for.
"It was not a good weekend for the Ferrari. It wasn't on the pace, it was struggling for grip which was a problem we had with both cars actually but the Aston was more consistent for the driver line- up. We will now put more effort into the Ferrari and go to Istanbul."