Vallelunga, Italy - 8 March 2013: The Marc VDS Racing Team can head into 2013 with confidence after a productive three-day test at Vallelunga in Italy. The team's two BMW Z4 GT3 cars were run on this season's tyres for the first time, with all the drivers present reporting gains made over the test.
Every step is another step towards our aim of winning the championship.
From an engineering stand point it was a crucial chance to get to know a slightly revised car, new tyres for the Blancpain Endurance Series in the shape of Pirelli and a number of new team members. Mixed conditions allowed the team to complete running on both wet and dry tracks. However, the dry running was limited and it remains to be seen the full impact of the new Pirelli tyres.
For both Buurman and Piccini, this was a first test with Marc VDS but both found themselves immediately comfortable and communicating well with their new teammates and engineers. For Piccini, it was just the second time he had sat in the car, and so extended running was invaluable to him. He was quickly on the pace of his new teammates and showed a good professional attitude.
The team now move to the official SRO balance of performance test at Paul Ricard, on the 12th and 13th of March.
Nick Catsburg: BMW Z4 GT3 #4 "It was a pretty good test, even though there was rain on all three days. On a positive side, this gave us a good chance to work with the Pirelli rain tyre, but some more time on the slick would be pretty useful. Most of the series last year was wet, so it is not the end of the world. The relationships with Henri and Markus feels really good - I knew them already and we get on well and we're having fun. It was good to get some time also with my new engineer Edward Turner, and we have a good understanding already."
Bas Leinders: BMW Z4 GT3 #3 "It's not an issue to have rain at the test, because we need to understand the wet tyres as much as the dry. And we had dry running on all three days here. Quite a lot was decided in the rain last year, so it's an important aspect! Yelmer will fit in nicely. You can see on the lap times that he is a fast driver and from the feedback you can hear he has good knowledge and is always pushing the team to improve. We reinforced our engineering staff over the winter and we've acquired a lot of data for them to analyse ahead of Paul Ricard. Every step is another step towards our aim of winning the championship."
Andy Richardson: Engineer BMW Z4 GT3 #3 "From an engineering point of view we've had a strong test. Though the rain didn't help us with dry set ups, we had a list of objectives and we've completed them. It was good to work with Yelmer, who will be with us all season, and Andrea who is new to the team. They fitted in well and the feedback was excellent from both. The team is working very well right now, everyone has gelled and the communication is very strong."