Jarama qualifying press conference

Drivers Present: - LMP900 - Tom Kristensen (TK) LMP675 - Didier De Radigues (DR) GTS - Bruno Lambert (BL) GT - Dirk Müller (DM) Q - First of all congratulations to all of you and turning to Tom Kristensen, how do you like the track here at ...

Drivers Present: -
LMP900 - Tom Kristensen (TK)
LMP675 - Didier De Radigues (DR)
GTS - Bruno Lambert (BL)
GT - Dirk Müller (DM)

Q - First of all congratulations to all of you and turning to Tom Kristensen, how do you like the track here at Jarama and what do you think of Madrid?

TK - I like it very much. I have never raced here before but I have been testing here in a sportscar before, so I knew the circuit. It's a very different kind of track compared to Le Mans. With the hairpins it requires a lot of traction, a lot of grip from the tyres. So in terms of track it is the complete opposite to Le Mans, but I like it because it is really technical and nice to drive. We'll need to be careful in traffic tomorrow because it will be difficult to overtake here. I haven't had a chance to visit Madrid yet, I haven't had the time but I hear it is a beautiful city.

Q - There aren't many circuits where you use the entire gearbox, do you think tomorrows race will be difficult on the machine?

TK - It will be very difficult on the machine, especially on the tyres. If it as warm as yesterday tomorrow it will be very hard. I'm quite confident though as we don't seem to have any problems with our car.

Q - Passing is going to be difficult here, are there any obvious places to pass?

TK - No! The long straight helps, if you have to race with other cars it is the only place to pass, otherwise it can be quite difficult.

Q - The Audi's are on a winning streak. How long will it continue?

TK - I don't know. But at the moment it looks good and it's up to the other manufacturers to improve.

Q - Turning to our pole sitter from the LMP675 class. Congratulations to Didier De Radigues in the Dick Barbour Racing Reynard Judd. Can we have your thoughts on qualifying.

DR - I went as fast as I could, not as quick as we went this morning, but we were quite confident we could take pole. We continued working as want to understand the car, the programme is very new for us.

Q - Because your car is new, is the car improving from race to race?

DR - Yes, we have really improved in the time between Donington and now. Qualifying for Le Mans, we were very happy to see our times improve and we have improved again here. So we are improving everytime. Continued...

Q - How much more improvement is there in the car? Can we expect more at Le Mans?

DR - Well yes. We have new parts from Reynard and the team is working hard. Hopefully it will all pay off and Le Mans will be better. Our goal now is to win our category and the cherry on the cake will be to win at Le Mans.

Q - Through the speed trap we were amazed how close the 675 cars are to the larger prototypes. What are you thoughts on passing at Jarama.

DR - Yes, with our little cars it is very easy! (laughing and looking at Tom Kristensen). No seriously, we have the same problem as the big cars, it is much harder to overtake here.

Q - Are you worried about the performance of the Goodyear tyres compared with the Michelins.

DR - No, the Goodyears are performing well, we are very pleased with our tyres. At Le Mans our performance compared well with the Michelin cars. The wet weather tyre is very good, so we can't complain.

Q - Turning to our GTS pole man Bruno Lambert. Congratulations and your thoughts on the pole.

BL - It is always very good to get a pole position. The team have been working hard on the car, which is still a new car for us. It is not the ideal track for our kind of car but it still went well. We'll work hard on improving the car tomorrow, hopefully improving our time during the race.

Q - You mentioned that this track is perhaps not ideal for the Saleen. In what way does this track make it so difficult.

BL - The car is naturally very well balanced, so we had no problems on the fast parts. We have been struggling in the slow corners with oversteer on the exits. It is something we are working on to make it better. This track is a lot of short corners followed by long straights.

Q - How new is the Saleen S7R?

BL - Basically the car was put together the day before Donington, so we went to the race at Donington without a lot of testing. We struggled there. At Le Mans we improved and went well.

Q - And last but not least we turn to our GT pole man Dirk Müller. Everybody who is anybody at BMW seems to be here this weekend. You must be pleased to capture pole in front of them.

DM - I am very pleased to take pole position for BMW and Schnitzer. The team really deserves victory, they have worked really hard on the car. Continued...

Q - You greatest competition seems to come from the number 42 BMW, both cars are very quick.

DM - Sure, the team is very strong. My team mate Fredrik (Ekblom) is very quick also, he took pole position at Donington in the last race. The whole team works well together, we have discussions with the engineers to find ways of improving the cars. Everything is open within the team. The most important thing is to win the championship for BMW and then who is going to win the title within the team, which I hope will be me. This season is long, there is a long way to go.

-ELMS

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Tom Kristensen , Dirk Müller , Bruno Lambert , Dick Barbour