Primat delighted at Petit Le Mans podium Harold Primat was delighted to net his first Petit Le Mans podium at the weekend after a huge turnaround in fortunes for his Creation Autosportif team at Road Atlanta. A troubled qualifying, where a...
Primat delighted at Petit Le Mans podium
Harold Primat was delighted to net his first Petit Le Mans podium at the weekend after a huge turnaround in fortunes for his Creation Autosportif team at Road Atlanta.
A troubled qualifying, where a wrong tyre choice meant the Creation could only set the 14th fastest time overall, saw the team make the difficult decision to start on different tyres to improve their early race performance, but suffer a penalty under American Le Mans Series rules which forced them to start the race from the back of the grid.
However, a near-faultless drive from Primat and co-drivers Jamie Campbell-Walter and Christophe Tinseau, coupled with solid reliability from their Creation CA07-Judd secured a second-in-class finish behind the works Audi of Allan McNish and Rino Capello.
"The weekend didn't start too well" Harold admitted after the race, "so to finish second in P1 represents a tremendous fight back from everyone involved. The car wasn't great in practice, but we made a change in the warm-up before the race which worked because the car felt really good to drive. To come from the back of the grid to finish fifth overall and on the class podium really is a fantastic result."
In an incident-packed race which saw several P1 and P2 cars involved in accidents in traffic, Primat had to keep his wits about him on several occasions during his stints. "There were a lot of on-track incidents just in front of me when I was in the car. I had to avoid a big crash between three prototypes, going over the grass to avoid it, and I also came across the accident between the Corvette and the Audi. I then had a puncture on the straight, at full-speed just before the chicane, which wasn't a nice experience!
"For me though, this is why endurance racing is so fascinating. You have to push as hard as you can to be competitive, but always make sure there is a margin for error, keeping your eyes open, in case anything happens around you."
Primat's second-in-class finish is his third ALMS podium from four outings in the prestigious championship, and the Geneva-based driver will be hoping to add to that number in the season-finale at Laguna Seca on Saturday 20 October.
"It's brilliant to come back from the States with a big trophy in my bag!" Harold laughed. "I'll have to go out and buy some more luggage now, and hopefully I'll need even more in two weeks time!"