After a strong qualifying session on Saturday with the third best time in the LMP2 category, the team was looking forward to the race on Sunday. Xavier Pompidou started the race. With a consistent first stint Xavier elevated the SPEEDY RACING...
After a strong qualifying session on Saturday with the third best time in the LMP2 category, the team was looking forward to the race on Sunday.
Xavier Pompidou started the race. With a consistent first stint Xavier elevated the SPEEDY RACING TEAM SEBAH Lola-Judd into second place in LMP2 and in the top ten overall.
At the end of his first stint Xavier had worked his tyres very hard due to his pushing in the early stage of the race. For10 laps he had to battle with the Essex Porsche #31 racing nose to tail.
After 26 laps Xavier came into the pits for refuelling and tyres change. He was quickly back into the podium battle and on the 30th lap he retook second place behind the #34 Porsche. Only a few laps later Xavier was 11 seconds behind the same Porsche #34 driven by Jos Verstappen who had had to serve a short Stop & Go penalty.
On lap 44 a big collision between Peugeot #7 and Porsche #76 put the Safety car on the track.
The SPEEDY RACING TEAM SEBAH Lola-Judd initially stayed out on the track, but the Team Manager called the car to the pit for an early stop so as to take advantage of the Safety Car and gain a few precious seconds. Xavier stayed in the car and was sent back to race for the third stint. The #33 Lola Michelin shod car had a quick respite from the pressure of the #31 Porsche when that car lost a wheel and had spend a few laps into the garage for repairs.
With 11/2 lap gap with the new third car in LMP2 classification and fifth place overall, the last part of the was set to be more relaxing...
But only three laps before the next scheduled pit stop for a driver change (Steve Zacchia was ready to climb into the car) Xavier was forced out of the track by #55 GT1 class Lamborghini when Xavier tried to overtake him once again in the race.
The #33 SPEEDY RACING TEAM SEBAH Lola-Judd crashed into the wall on the start/finish straight, causing the retirement of the car and the end of the hoped for podium result for the team.
Xavier Pompidou : "I don't understand why he did not let me overtake him. I flashed the light for half a lap but he was ignoring the blue flags, he touched me 4 times before we arrived on the straight lane. And then something broke at he rear and I lost the car. I am really disappointed, It's really a shame, we were heading for a very good result and we were still able to put some pressure on the leading car. It's hard to finish the season like this."
Team Manager Bart Hayden : " We were really on the pace to climb a least onto the second spot of the podium. The performance of the car was great during all week- end and we were confident with the gear box management system we installed before the race to solve the problems we experienced at Nurburgring. The hard work of the team during all season was not rewarded, but motorsport is sometimes like this.
Andrea Belicchi, Xavier Pompidou and Steve Zacchia drove very well all season, so it`s a shame for everyone. I would like to say that Lola that supported us very well for this first season of the Coupe and want to thank all their designers and engineers. I have a special thanks for our sponsors and partners. They were with us this week end, this programme with the new Lola B08/80 Coupe and the new Judd DB has only been made possible with their fantastic support and enthusiasm. We will study the new A.C.O regulations for next season to offer them the best package for a successful 2009 season."