Natacha Gachnang on the Nuerburgring takes pole and a podium for HopePoleVision Racing in the Formula Le Mans Cup competition Saturday 22 August 2009 - 20 days after racing at Portimao in the Algarve, the Formula Le Mans Cup competition ...
Natacha Gachnang on the Nuerburgring takes pole and a podium for HopePoleVision Racing in the Formula Le Mans Cup competition
Saturday 22 August 2009 - 20 days after racing at Portimao in the Algarve, the Formula Le Mans Cup competition resumed at the Nurburgring circuit in Germany. This time Natacha Gachnag did not have to split her time like in Portugal between the Radical programme and the Formula Le Mans race. The young Swiss driver nevertheless set the best times in testing for Hope Pole Vision.
Natacha finished fifth in the first Formula Le Mans race and climbed onto the podium for the second race of the fourth round of the season on the 5.4 km German circuit. The Hope PoleVision Racing team, which has 19 points in the general classification with four podiums in five races was hoping for victory in Germany.
After the first tests which had been disrupted by rain, the track had dried for the start of qualifying. Mathias Beche and Christophe Pillon put the two PoleVision Racing cars on the second row. In the second session the track conditions were even more interesting with the sun now shining strongly. Wolfgang Kaufmann set the best time in 1m 52.430s and Cronje completed the front row when Natacha got up to pole for Hope PoleVision Racing! For the first time in the history of Formula Le Mans there was a female driver in pole for the second race which she finished with a brilliant podium.
Natacha Gachnang: "For the first race my team mate took the start and had a good getaway. When I took the wheel I was competitive and careful with my moves to avoid any incidents or damage. We actually had some problems with the brakes and the front wheels locked. In preparing for the second race I wasn't thinking of making the pole! I love the Nuerburgring where I have lots of good memories. The engineers have worked hard to improve the car and I had to remain prudent while the track was slippery. At the start I attacked too hard and the car was sliding around. I then quickly found my rhythm. I would have loved to win, but finishing on the podium is pretty satisfying too. I took a good start from the lead and resisted attacks from behind. The two Hope PoleVision cars were in the lead after the first lap and I worked hard to build our lead and a gap. My codriver Christophe Pillon took over in the lead of the race ahead of Verdonck, Beche, Moro and Toulemonde. But twenty minutes before the finish his pace fell off little by little and was passed by Nico Verdonck. This plus penalties handicapped our eventual classification."