NISSAN POWER RULES WHILE GT ACADEMY WINNER RUES
Nissan power ruled the LMP2 class again today, taking first, second and third place in the FIA World Endurance Championship race at Spa in Belgium. Nissan’s GT Academy winner, Jordan Tresson, made an exceptional LMP2 race debut but was left to rue the moment he switched off his traction control!
The Spa 6 Hours started on a wet track after heavy rain showers throughout the morning. Despite the gloomy skies it was a glorious day for British team JOTA Sport who won the LMP2 class with their Zytek Nissan. Joining them on the podium was the ADR-Delta team’s Oreca Nissan and a third Nissan powered Oreca in third place in the hands of the Murphy Prototypes team. Six out of the top seven LMP2 cars were powered by Nissan, which is a great precursor to the forthcoming Le Mans 24 Hours.
Today was a big day for GT Academy winner, Jordan Tresson, as he was making his racing debut in the LMP2 class. He did of course take part in practice at Sebring but missed out on the chance to race when the car was involved in an accident before it was his turn to drive. The No.23 Signatech Nissan had a troubled start to the race when a puncture on lap one sent starting driver Olivier Lombard straight to the pits. Lombard soon settled into the race and recovered from the back of the 17 car LMP2 field to sixth place by the end of his lengthy stint.
Jordan jumped in next and soon set about posting consistently fast lap times and it wasn’t until the very last corner on the last lap of his two-hour run that his luck ran out.
“I went out to do my best today,” said Jordan. “It was important for me to get some good race mileage in before Le Mans and that is what I did. I felt very comfortable out there and was able to post competitive times on every lap. The car was a pleasure to drive and I learned a lot about dealing with the different types of traffic that I will encounter at Le Mans.”
“On my in lap I had to hit the switch for the reserve fuel pump when I was at Stavelot,” he explained. “Unfortunately I hit the traction control switch at the same time and turned it off. I couldn’t look down as I was focusing on the traffic instead of my thumb! The next corner was the Bus Stop Chicane and as I went on the power I spun onto the grass and then got stuck as slick tyres on wet grass is not a good combination. I got back to the pits eventually and the team repaired the damage to the left rear corner and sent Franck Mailleux out into the race.”
Mailleux brought the car home in 13th place in the Spa 6 Hours, which is seventh place in the FIA WEC standings. Not the result the team wanted but they will soon be back on track and ready to fight again at Le Mans.
“I feel really sad for the team as we were in a good position to score points today,” said Jordan. “It’s my fault and it’s a real shame but I will learn the lesson and remember the good parts of today and focus on Le Mans.”