Portimao: Olivier Pla race report

A tremendous weekend for Olivier Pla With the Quifel-ASM Team Ginetta-Zytek, the driver from Toulouse took the victory in the LMP2 class at Portimao. The third round of the Le Mans Series in Portugal was the Quifel- ASM Team home race; this is...

A tremendous weekend for Olivier Pla

With the Quifel-ASM Team Ginetta-Zytek, the driver from Toulouse took the victory in the LMP2 class at Portimao.

The third round of the Le Mans Series in Portugal was the Quifel- ASM Team home race; this is why Olivier Pla and teammate Miguel Amaral expected a lot from the event. Both drivers achieved their goal. They took the victory and have been the fastest ones for the whole weekend.

Second of the Series before the Lusitanian round, Olivier Pla has been at his best from the practice sessions and posted the best lap at each session. Moreover, he demonstrated how good the car is and took the pole on the new " Autodromo do Algarve " more than four tenths ahead of the second car! "After setting the best lap during the practice sessions, I would have been disappointed would I have not taken the pole", explained Olivier. "This first place on the grid was very important for us: people expected a lot from us for our home race, and we had less pressure after chalking up the best time. We could capitalize on Quifel-ASM Team's hard work as well as Ginetta-Zytek and Dunlop's one."

On Saturday, Olivier Pla took off at 07:15 pm for a 1000 Km night race. From the beginning, he was well ahead of his rivals. "I pushed hard and I could make my way through traffic and widen the gap," added the driver from Toulouse. "We aimed to be out of reach". Olivier worked hard and was fifth overall after two hours, in front of an Aston Martin, which is a LMP1! When Miguel Amaral took over from Olivier, he kept the pace and stayed ahead of his competitors. At the end of the fourth hour, the French driver got back into the car Nr.40, on his way to success in the LMP2 class: "The gap with the other prototypes was growing and growing in the first part of this stint, so I could slow down a bit in the last minutes. The only warning sign came from the radio, which was not working anymore. But as a whole, the car was highly competitive, very easy to drive. We already tested here before Le Mans, but the team, Ginetta-Zytek and Dunlop did an awesome job. The car has been perfect from start to finish."

And so, Olivier Pla and Miguel Amaral could celebrate a victory again. The feeling was especially strong because Quifel-ASM Team is Portuguese. "This is a great pleasure to be back on the first step of the podium and win in Endurance for the very first time. After second place at Barcelona, Spa and Le Mans have been difficult. This time, we didn't miss the victory. It was the right time because the race took place in Portugal. I am delighted for the whole crew. The team effort is rewarded."

With 21 points, Olivier Pla and Miguel Amaral lead the Le Mans Series, as well as Quifel-ASM Team.

-credit: op

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About this article
Series European Le Mans
Drivers Olivier Pla , Miguel Amaral