Pegasus Racing offers its drivers the Formula Le Mans title!
The Strasbourg-based team Pegasus Racing scored its third win of the season in Formula Le Mans in the Silverstone 6 Hours, the fourth round of the 2011 Le Mans Series. Mirco Schultis, Patrick Simon and Julien Schell have a 100% record in podium finishes this year and have won the drivers’ title. They still have to bag the teams’ crown because two other entrants are still in contention as the Series heads to Portugal for the final round.
When he left the podium, Julien Schell had this to say about this new title added to those in Formula Ford and the VdV Series: «We’ve enjoyed incredible reliability since the start of the season. In the races we haven’t had the slightest problem. It has to be said that this is one solid racing car, but we burn the midnight oil before each race to make sure that it’s all going to hold together. After that it’s up to the drivers to be consistent and avoid the traps. Here for example, it was crucial to be patient at the start of the race as everybody was a bit twitchy. Our main loss of time was due to a bonnet change just over half an hour from the end to respect the regulations on the louvers (openings above the front wheel arches).
The battle raged in FLM at Silverstone as witnessed by the fact that only 3 seconds separated the first three after an hour‘s racing, and the gap was 52 s after two hours. Patrick Simon was fourth on the grid, and he had moved up to second place after his double stint. Mirco Schultis was steadier than his direct rivals and took the lead. Julien Schell had stretched the gap to 2 laps by the end of the fifth hour. The bonnet change cut the Alsatian team’s lead to under a minute. Schultis controlled the gap, and took the flag 20.325 s in front of Genoa Racing and a lap in front of JMB Racing.
Julien Schell’s team-mates were delighted with this victory and the title. «The race went off without any technical problems. The car was well prepared and ran like a dream,» said a very happy Schultis, the 2009 AvD-100 Miles champion. «Everybody did what they had to do to win the race and the championship. It’s really fantastic as at the start of the season I wanted to drive a prototype with a Chevrolet engine, but I wasn’t really thinking of the title.»
Patrick Simon, runner-up in the 1998 German Porsche Cup could not hide his satisfaction: «It was a pretty hectic start and we had to pay a lot of attention to the traffic with forty-six cars on the track. I wasn’t able to avoid tagging a Ferrari, luckily without damage. The team did a great job in the pits between my stints, and thanks to our setup we used only two sets of tyres for the six-hour race.»
Summing up, Julien Schell underlined just how important the team’ title is as it will have an influence on Pegasus Racing’s ambitious projects for 2012: «The drivers’ title is in the bag and it adds another great line to our set of results. We’ve also made a big step forward towards the teams’ title, which is crucial as it gives us an invitation for the Le Mans 24 Hours. Our aim is to enter a car in LM P2, and maybe a second team. If everything goes according to plan in Estoril, we’ll have five months to talk to the sponsors and drivers, to choose the most interesting championship and the best chassis-engine-tyre package.»
The final verdict in the 2011 Le Mans Series will be handed down in Portugal on 26th September.