Brno: Friday quotes

Quotes from Free Practice Matteo Bobbi -- nr 1 BMS Scuderia Italia Ferrari 550 Maranello : "We just ran hard compound tyres this morning, working for the race. I was quite surprised with my time, because I expected to be 12th, and I was ...

Quotes from Free Practice

Matteo Bobbi -- nr 1 BMS Scuderia Italia Ferrari 550 Maranello : "We just ran hard compound tyres this morning, working for the race. I was quite surprised with my time, because I expected to be 12th, and I was 6th. Gabriele did a long run with the same tyres, and he was pretty fast too. In the afternoon went out with a medium tyre to try something for qualifying. We have 80 kg, but the car is still very good. It might be difficult for qualifying, but it should be fine for the race. Last year, the car was still very fast with 100 kg on board ! But the Lister is very fast here, and the Saleen too, of course."

Michael Bartels - nr 5 Vitaphone Racing Team Saleen S7 : "We tried out two different sets of tyres in the first free practice, and everything went really well. But then we changed the dampers between the two sessions to gain a bit of an advantage. Obviously, that didn't work out at all! So we will undo the changes for tomorrow. Overall, we're not too unhappy, though."

Mike Newton -- nr 7 RML Saleen S7 : "This morning we were bedding in the new gearbox which we had to put in after Hockenheim, and we were bedding brakes in at the same time. Although it's frustrating, especially if it rains in the afternoon, it's something you have to do. There is no point running the gearbox hard and having it fail again. Hopefully, if it stays dry, we can work on the set-up. We're a bit behind now, but we'll see if we can get a good car for the race."

Chris Goodwin -- nr 8 RML Saleen S7 : "We're steadily getting there. We are just continuing the gradual progress. It's not as fast as we would like and it's happened at the races rather than at a test track, but every race, we have got an inch further, and with second and fourth in this second session today, we are pleased with what we have achieved. And we still have plenty of scope to improve further."

Mike Hezemans -- nr 13 GPC Giesse Ferrari 575 M Maranello : "We were testing two sets of tyres so we did a lot of laps. Here you really go up and down a lot, and we are losing about two seconds. I want to try something else tomorrow. We need to find a good set-up and tyre choice for the race. We don't care too much about qualifying, but need the right conditions for the race."

Karl Wendlinger -- nr 17 JMB Racing Ferrari 575 M Maranello: "We have some troubles with the balance of the car as well as with the grip. After Hockenheim and the test, I was quite confident. I expected a little more, to be honest. We improved the balance this afternoon, I think. But the grip level is still not good. We still have to adjust something for tomorrow, and then we will see. We started out well, but there were no big improvements after that because we couldn't find the grip level."

Peter Kutemann -- nr 19 JMB Racing Ferrari 575 M Maranello: "We had no problems. I'm satisfied with our result. We tried a different set of tyres in the second stint, and I was a second and a half faster. So, the car is good. The track is very good as well, but there are lots of cars going into the gravel and making the track dirty. Everyone is complaining about that. But it's the same problem for everyone." Paolo Ruberti -- nr 28 Graham Nash Motorsport Saleen S7 : "We had some problems with the set-up in the morning, which we tried to sort out in the afternoon. We have put in a new gearbox. It's a good circuit, with nice corners and ups and downs; I hope it will be good for our Saleen."

Jamie Campbell-Walter -- nr 27 Creation Autosportif Lister Storm : "That was a good time this morning. Obviously it was done right at the beginning of the session, on new tyres. I've done quite a few laps round here, and it's a good circuit for the Lister, as we all know. I'm very happy, the car is quite good but could be better. Over one lap it is very good, but we have a bit too much oversteer for the race, so we'll carry on working."

Anthony Kumpen -- nr 28 Graham Nash Motorsport Saleen S7 : "I drove the car for the first time this afternoon; I only found out about the drive yesterday, and arrived at the track after the first free practice session. I drove about eight or nine laps this afternoon to get a feel of the car. It' s nice -- a really good car. Last time I drove in the Championship, at Monza, I set the pole; I'd like to do the same tomorrow but I think it will be difficult. It's a good team, I have a good team-mates; I've watched the races this year and I've noticed that if we can manage to get to the end, we could manage a good result. We'll have to see what happens."

Emmanuel Collard - nr 50 Freisinger Yukos Motorsport Porsche 996 GT3-RS : "We've set the fastest lap time, so I'm pleased with the practice result today. The car was a bit difficult to drive, though. We had some problems with oversteer. It improved a bit with new tyres, but we'll try to make some more improvements tomorrow."

Jan Vonka -- nr 57 Vonka Racing Porsche: "I already tested at this circuit when they were just finishing to build it. I really like it; it has a very nice profile. I am very pleased that Vonka Racing can compete in an FIA GT race at my home circuit, and I hope all the competitors will have a good time in Brno. Today, everything was okay in both the morning and the afternoon session, although we may have to change the tyres."

Christian Pescatori -- nr 62 GPC Giesse Ferrari 360 Modena : "We tried new tyres from Pirelli, which were very quick. But we always do well on Friday and Saturday; it's during the race on Sunday that we always seem to run into little problems. We're not too far behind in the points, this is only the fifth race, but the problem is that each time something goes wrong. This time we hope it will be OK."

Horst Felbermayr Jr -- nr 63 JVG Racing Porsche 996 GT3 : "It takes time to get used to racing again, but the car is running very well and I am happy ! We hope to do Spa, and another one or two this year. This is my first race of the season; last year, we did a Spanish GT race last November in Barcelona, and finished third. So now we'll see how it goes this weekend."

Mini interview Jaime Melo -- nr 17 JMB Racing Ferrari 575 M Maranello :

Brazilian driver Melo, a Formula Renault V6 race-winner in 2003, and a JMB Racing driver in their Ferrari 360 Modena, has joined Karl Wendlinger in the nr 17 Ferrari this weekend.

How are you enjoying your first time in the FIA GT Championship ?

"This is a very nice opportunity for me. I still need to learn the car a little better, but I had a good free practice, and I think the result is good for my first time!

You've been here in the LG Super Racing Weekend last year with the Formula Renault V6, so you already know the teams, and the area and the track.

"Yes, I know the track; that's not the problem. But I need to get to know the car. Lap by lap, I'm gaining confidence."

You're driving the team's Ferrari 360 in the LMES. Is it very different moving up to the 575?

"To be honest, it's not that a big difference. Obviously, the power of the car is different, which affects the handling.

You have got a good teacher alongside you with Karl !

"Yes, we spoke a lot before the free practice. He has helped me a lot, for sure. This is good experience for me; it is only my second endurance race, so it is all a little bit new, but I'm enjoying it."

-fia-

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About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Karl Wendlinger , Christian Pescatori , Emmanuel Collard , Chris Goodwin , Michael Bartels , Matteo Bobbi , Jamie Campbell-Walter , Jaime Melo , Anthony Kumpen , Mike Hezemans , Mike Newton , Peter Kutemann , Paolo Ruberti , Jan Vonka