SGTC: Balfe Motorsport Jarama preview

Balfe Looking For Repeat Performance in Spain The Balfe Motorsport team heads to the former Grand Prix venue of Jarama in Spain next weekend (May 22/23). The Newark Glass Group backed squad is hoping to find the same form that netted it the...

Balfe Looking For Repeat Performance in Spain

The Balfe Motorsport team heads to the former Grand Prix venue of Jarama in Spain next weekend (May 22/23). The Newark Glass Group backed squad is hoping to find the same form that netted it the lead of the Spanish GT Championship at round one.

The team has been looking forward to the latest round of the series after a superb start to the season at Albacete at the end of April, sixth place in race one and victory in race two put drivers Shaun Balfe and Nigel Taylor at the top of the points table.

Another top result in round two is what the team is looking for. However, lead driver Balfe is under no illusions about how difficult the rest of the season is going to be for the team.

"We definitely had some luck in Albacete," he said. "But, you need that in racing, especially endurance and GT racing. We are aiming to be consistent throughout the weekend and hopefully that will allow us to pick up a good points haul," he added.

"I'd like to be able to carry our championship quest on to round three at Estoril in Portugal so a good pair of results in Jarama will be crucial," he said.

The race victory also continued Balfe's opening round winning streak, started three years ago. He has now won a race at the opening round of the championship he has contested for the last four seasons. The last three were all at Donington Park, but he had to travel all the way to Spain to continue the run.

The nature of the track should suit the Mosler MT900R well, with one long main straight - where the 5.7 litre V8 can stretch its legs - and a series of twists and sweeping curves where the torque of the engine and the superb set-up of the car can make a difference.

"We have done some development to the car over the last few weeks which should help us against some of the more powerful cars in the Spanish series," said Balfe. "The Mosler was excellent at Albacete, the twisty nature of the track suited us and with the work we have done we should have gained we hope to be in great shape in Jarama too. We obviously won't know until we get there, but we certainly made an impression on the rest of the grid at round one," he added.

The Jarama track was last used as a Formula One venue in 1981, when the late Gilles Villeneuve took victory for Ferrari. The Balfe team will be hoping to make its mark at the venue and keep on top of its rivals.

"The whole team worked really hard in Albacete and we were extremely happy with the result but the rest of the field will be out to beat us for the remainder of the season. We know that it is going to be a tough fight, especially with the likes of the factory Seat team and the more powerful cars in our class. But we've shown that we can take on quicker teams before and win, so we are looking forward to the challenge," he added.

-bf3/gt-

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About this article
Series Other open wheel
Drivers Gilles Villeneuve , Shaun Balfe