Portimao: Spyker Squadron race report

Disappointing end in great LMS 1000 km of the Algarve Dutchman Tom Coronel started today's 1000 km race from the back of the grid as a result of missing the qualification yesterday. The team took their time to replace an engine that failed in...

Disappointing end in great LMS 1000 km of the Algarve

Dutchman Tom Coronel started today's 1000 km race from the back of the grid as a result of missing the qualification yesterday. The team took their time to replace an engine that failed in the third and last free practice session and therefore missed qualifying. Although the SNORAS Spyker Squadron drivers Tom Coronel and Jarek Janis did really well in the race, less than an hour before the finish they had to give up due to an engine failure whilst running in fourth position and only 55 seconds behind the Ferrari F430 running in third.

The race got underway at 19h15 in great weather conditions; the wind picked up and the outside temperature dropped to around 25 degrees centigrade. A reasonable number of spectators switched their pool or the beach for the newly build Algarve circuit close to Portimao to watch the third Le Mans Series round. Although the early stages of the race knew many accidents and collisions, the SNORAS Spyker Squadron drivers managed to stay out of trouble and swiftly moved forward in the competitive twelve-car GT2 field.

The crashes and contact between cars in various classes continued when darkness set in at around 21h00. The only problems for the Dutch were some vibrations caused by dirt and tire pick-up. After each hour or so the drivers returned to the pit box for a regular stop for a driver change, tires and fuel. Both drivers showed that they could produce top-3 times and it was only until 00h25 when Tom called over the radio reporting a potential engine or exhaust related problem. The mechanics quickly examined the car and found the cause to be engine related. When Tom Coronel returned the #85 Spyker C8 Laviolette GT2R to the pit box he ran in 4th position approximately 55 seconds behind the number three in the GT2 class.

Peter van Erp, managing director Spyker Squadron: "this is really disappointing. It is one of these weekends... First we replaced the gearbox on Thursday and then the engine on Friday and now we are forced to withdraw the car with another engine failure. The car was great in the race and in his second stint Tom was the quickest GT2 driver on the track. The drivers were very happy with the competitiveness of car and had full confidence in driving the car close to the limits. We have worked very hard to put a fast car on the grid. I wish reliability was better and am very anxious to find out what the exact cause of the problem is".

The next race for the team is the 1000 km of the Nurburgring on 23 August.

-credit: spyker

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About this article
Series European Le Mans
Drivers Tom Coronel , Jarek Janis