"Our first podium spot was within reach...." were the words spoken by Frank Hahn as the G-Force Courage was pushed into the box. The team had a great weekend until than and Hart, Leroch and Hahn were on their way to a first great performance for G-Force in the LMES-series. Finally a 4th spot in LMP2 and a 16th overall was still a fine achievement.
Dutchman David Hart felt immediately at home within the Belgian team. "The team is warm and familiar, and what's more I get appreciation from the complete crew for my job: Not only, I did qualifying of the car, I will also start the Courage tomorrow afternoon. "
"My first laps in the Courage were really satisfying, throughout the three free practice sessions, I bettered my lap times by 2 seconds per session. By doing so, I wasn't too far away from the regular prototype drivers in qualifying."
David put the Radiator Factory Courage in 18th position on the grid. "I was close to the better drivers and this makes me feel confident. But my respect for the regular drivers of these open prototypes is really growing. It's a very special experience. The car is also very different from the GT- cars I normally drive. The down force is really amazing."
The first half of the race went smoothly. David Hart took the start, as mentioned before, and climbed up the rankings till he made a somewhat anticipated pit stop. "I picked up some dirt with my tires and this caused vibrations. It felt like I had a puncture and so I made my first stop a few laps earlier as expected." After two hours, Jean-François Leroch, his French teammate took over the car. "My stint was one without any problem. What's more, I managed to get within the top-3 of our class and even 10th overall. This is a good result for our squad."
A broken cable between the starter button and the starter motor made a temporary end to the performance of the Belgian Courage. Frank Hahn, who was behind the wheel of the car, explains: "This is really disappointing, this incident made us loose 18 minutes or about 9 or 10 laps. Our excellent position is now gone but David and Jean-François will do everything possible to get the #35 Courage back in a good position." Finally, a top-3 was still within reach but the team finished on a 4th place in LMP2.
Germain Liebens, team manager of G-Force, remains optimistic after the Nürburgring adventure. "We make progression at each meeting; without the technical failure, we could have been 3rd or even 2nd in class. But with 'if' you will never win a race. We know that there still is a lot to do and we will continue this way. We go to Turkey and will try to do one or two places better."