Donington: Friday driver quotes

Free Practice Quotes Marco Streparava - Sporting Director, BMS Scuderia Italia : "We had a problem with the engine on the nr 2 car; it exploded and oil went on the hoses, and the car caught fire. It is quite badly damaged. We have ...

Free Practice Quotes

Marco Streparava - Sporting Director, BMS Scuderia Italia : "We had a problem with the engine on the nr 2 car; it exploded and oil went on the hoses, and the car caught fire. It is quite badly damaged. We have stopped absolutely for today and we will work for tomorrow. For the nr 3 car, it had a problem with the right rear wheel, and it went into the gravel, and it stayed there. It has not been a good start to the weekend for us !"

Gabriele Gardel - nr 1 BMS Scuderia Italia Ferrari 550 Maranello : "I really love this circuit, it really suits my driving style. I did well here last year, and finished third on the podium. But the car is going well, and it feels so light with only 40 kg penalty weight instead of 80 ! "

Walter Lechner - nr 4 Konrad Motorsport Saleen S7 : "We had some problems today; the nr 5 car is good, but the nr 4 car is not so fast. We worked very hard on the set-up; we have to see what changes they made on the nr 5 car. We need to work on the aerodynamics, as I think this is not working at the moment, it might be too low at the rear and high at the front, so we will change it for tomorrow and I am sure it will get better. At the moment I don't feel really comfortable around the circuit, which is new to me - I have to learn it. We could not really work on the car in both sessions, as Paul Knapfield needs to learn the car as well. There is a lot to do."

Val Hillebrand - nr 9 Zwaan's Racing Chrysler Viper : "We had some problem with the tyres. We started on old tyres, which were harder, and they were great. Then we went on to some new soft tyres and we were slower, which was not great. So we went back to the harder tyres, at the end, and I did a 1:29.3, which was pretty good. With the harder compound tyres, we can improve. I'm really confident, because we did some good, consistent times. The car feels totally different here, it just suits this circuit so well. With just Rob and me in the car this weekend, I hope we can do a good job, and even another podium, like last year. I love the track."

Fabio Babini - nr 11 GPC Giesse Squadra Corse : "The car has gone really well today. This morning we did some good work, and set fourth time. This afternoon we did engine testing, and had a few electrical problems. I run at the end, with old tyres, and set our best time of the day; we had really good grip. We tested in Vallelunga, and worked very hard. I think this is the result; it is important to work at home and to find the right solutions for the race. It is very good to arrive here on the Friday and to already have something good. It was a very close session, and we were very good."

Jamie Melo - nr 17 JMB Racing Ferrari 575 M Maranello : "The car is working well, the set-up is good, so we are very confident for both the race and the qualifying. I drove here in the Formula Renault V6 Eurocup last year; I like the circuit. Everything looks good, and it has been a good start for the weekend. The car feels a lot better for qualifying, so if we can qualify better than in Brno, we can also do a better race."

Rob Croydon - nr 22 Wieth Racing Ferrari 550 Maranello : "We missed the morning session unfortunately, but I got ten laps in the car this afternoon. It's a nice car, and I've enjoyed it. I've driven quite a few different things up to now - NASCAR, GT, Prototypes, Radicals, and finished the Nürburgring 24 Hours recently. This is my first FIA GT Championship race, but I hope it won't be my last."

Jamie Campbell-Walter - nr 27 Creation Autosportif Lister Storm : "I think the car will be really good for the race. We can do 1:29 laps on old tyres, with half-tank, which will be really good for the race. I don't think we've got the ultimate speed for qualifying, but if we get the car a bit better, we should be able to do a low 1:28. It's quite close at the top, so you have to hook up a good lap for qualifying. We'd like to be up the grid; the brakes are good, the car is nicely balanced, we're all on the pace here."

Bobby Verdon-Roe - nr 27 Creation Autosportif Lister Storm : "It's nice to be back in the car - it feels a lot better than last year, too. I should be here for this race then for Spa. I've been racing historics recently, which is quite good fun - but it's nice to be back here !"

Paul Whight - nr 28 Graham Nash Motorsport Saleen S7 : "I've only had three laps in the car so far, so I'm not sure yet. I tested in the wet in Snetterton last week, among 40 2CV cars, so I have not had any real running yet. But it is very similar to the Group C car I normally race, an Aston Martin Group 2 car, which is very quick. I had a big crash seven weeks ago, and I am still on crutches, having crushed my ankles. But while I've been out of action, I've been following my son's progress, who is racing in the Cup class in the British GT Championship."

Nathan Kinch - nr 65 Scuderia Ecosse Ferrari 360 Modena : "Andrew did a great job. Everything is going well so far. The team did a fantastic job to get the car out after the crash we had a Castle Combe last weekend. It feels good out there - it does take a bit of time to get used to the GT cars going past you - I've got a new respect for the N-GT drivers now ! The British Championship has been going well, the team has done a great job and I get on well with Andrew. But I do miss the FIA GT Championship, the great circuits and the GT-class cars ! We are not really surprised with our times today; we have the latest spec car and we thought we'd be up with the GPC Ferrari. But the race is a different matter. We'll have to see. But I'm looking forward to it !"

Jonathan Cocker - nr 88 Gruppe M Porsche 996 GT3 : "It's going very well so far - we've made quite a few changes to the car and hope to go quicker. Since we were last here in the British Championship we have made quite a few changes to the car, so we had to make some adjustments. I know Donington quite well, but you are still always learning and finding new things. It is quite strange to be out there and to have cars like the Saleen and Ferrari flying past you on the straight - they are really quick cars. You have to think about them passing you. But it's good to see the Scuderia Ecosse Ferrari doing so well- it's a good target for us to chase in the British GT Championship. It's a long race on Sunday, and a lot can happen - it will be the longest race I'll have done."


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About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Jamie Campbell-Walter , Val Hillebrand , Fabio Babini , Nathan Kinch , Jonathan Cocker , Rob Croydon , Gabriele Gardel , Bobby Verdon-Roe , Paul Knapfield , Paul Whight