First qualifying practice session quotes by SRT Motorsports

The drivers were doing exactly what they needed to do - Gary Johnson

Gary Johnson – SRT Motorsports Racing Manager
Were you trying to find balance in this session? “We weren’t really looking for speed that much here. If it came, it came but we really wanted to get the drivers comfortable with the new lighting system. We did and also got some qualifying laps in. The drivers were doing exactly what they needed to do, which was bring the car back in one piece and make sure the next driver could get in and qualify and that they accomplished.”

Did you get enough track time to get a feel for how the new lighting system functioned? “Yeah, we heard from Marc (Goossens) that they looked pretty good. We should be in good shape there.”

Dominik Farnbacher – No. 53 SRT Viper GTS-R

#53 SRT Motorsports Viper SRT GTS-R: Ryan Dalziel, Dominik Farnbacher, Marc Goossens
#53 SRT Motorsports Viper SRT GTS-R: Ryan Dalziel, Dominik Farnbacher, Marc Goossens

Photo by: James M. Holland

“I tried to get my mandatory five laps down in the night but other than that, everything worked well. We’re still just trying to find a very good balance on the car in order to not lose top speed. I was also trying to look at the tire consistency, how long we can go on one tire set. We’re still in that learning process so every lap counts. It was important time for us and we’ll have to see tomorrow to get more promising time on the car and on the tires to finally get a good race setup.”

How different is this track from the daylight to night? “It’s a pretty big difference. I mean during the day you can see the apexes. Here (at night) it’s very hard to see that because you’re traveling at such high speeds and you always have those big lights behind you, either it’s the Prototypes or it’s the track lights which are big, bright lights in your mirror behind you so you always think there is a Prototype behind you but it’s just the track lights. It’s pretty tough to concentrate in your stints during your run in the night. I think everybody is experienced enough to deal with that.”

Is it a big factor to lose that one hour of practice tonight? “Yes, definitely, especially for us as a new team. As newcomers it’s important time which is lost. We’ll have to deal with it. I mean, that’s how it is, we can’t change it and now we’re looking forward to tomorrow.”

Marc Goossens – No. 53 SRT Viper GTS-R
How big of a factor is losing practice time tonight? “Even the first session got cut short. It did affect us in one small way. I mean, we weren’t really looking for lap time this evening because we think the track might be better tomorrow, obviously depending on the weather forecast and everything else but when we started doing our five mandatory laps for the night session, we wanted to get all the drivers to have their five laps and that’s what we did.

“There’s still four hours of qualifying left. I have to double-check but I think we all are set now with the minimum of laps that we need to do in the nighttime so tomorrow is going to be another day of testing, trying to find a better balance in the car.

“But that’s okay. It didn’t really matter in the way we were trying to find the setup and trying to find better balance in the car. But we haven’t been looking for that performance yet because we were still working on other stuff.

“So far I think today has been great, especially if you look at how the weather has been the last couple of days. It’s very hard to predict what it’s going to do during the sessions and you know we obviously got cut short for a little bit of time there in Free Practice because of rain, not too long luckily enough, so we could work with the car a little bit but unfortunately they stopped the session with a half-hour left in Free Practice and 45 minutes at the end now in qualifying that they made it shorter because of repairs on the track. It’s the way it is I guess. It’s the same for everybody but for us newcomers to this event we need more laps, we need more track time. But the baseline is good and we keep building on that for tomorrow.”

SRT Motorsports

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About this article
Series LEMANS
Article type Qualifying report
Tags 24 hours of le mans, 2013, circuit de la sarthe, srt motorsports

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