Donington: Qualifying quotes

QUALIFYING QUOTES GT Pole : Walter Lechner Jr - nr 4 Konrad Motorsport Saleen S7: "Today I am very happy, as after the two practice sessions yesterday, I did not expect to be up here on pole today to be honest. But I think the rain and ...

QUALIFYING QUOTES

GT Pole : Walter Lechner Jr - nr 4 Konrad Motorsport Saleen S7: "Today I am very happy, as after the two practice sessions yesterday, I did not expect to be up here on pole today to be honest. But I think the rain and the difficult track situation helped me a lot. The car was good, we made some changes and tried to get a good balance. When the rain lessened we decided to go on intermediate tyres, and it worked well. So I had a good lap, and I want to say thank you to the team and to Pirelli, who gave us a very good intermediate tyre for tomorrow."

N-GT Pole : Emmanuel Collard - nr 50 Freisinger Motorsport Porsche 996 GT3-RS : "We were very happy with the car. We worked very hard on the wet conditions and found a good set-up; we also had a good tyre situation. But tomorrow it is likely to be dry, so I think we need to start everything again for tomorrow. The British teams did well, as they know the track well, but I really like driving the car in these conditions."

2nd in GT : Matteo Bobbi - nr 1 BMS Scuderia Italia Ferrari 550 Maranello : "We didn't use the intermediate tyres in the morning, which might not have been the right decision. But anyway the car is very good in all the sessions, and I am very happy with the set-up. It was really fun to drive the car in the damp this morning. We tested some different tyre compounds yesterday and found a good one, so I hope it will be dry tomorrow, because it will be more interesting for everyone. And, for sure, we will try to push. We have less weight this weekend, which might be better in the dry - but still, I would prefer to have more weight and more points !"

3rd in GT : Stefano Livio - nr 3 Care Racing Ferrari 550 Maranello : "This is my best qualifying position this season, which is very good for me. Yesterday, my car spent most of the time in the garage, after Enzo had a crash in the morning. This morning, after six laps, I was in P1. I went down to P3, but it is still very good for me."

2nd in N-GT : Lucas Luhr - nr 99 Freisinger Motorsport : Our only problem is that Emmanuel is too quick. We had no hope of beating him in the rain this afternoon. For some reason or other we could not get our tyres to work, and we were sliding around all over the place. Hopefully tomorrow will be dry and we will be in better shape. I think it will be agood close race tomorrow. We have another Ferrari from the British Championship which is good, but I think the main fight will be between the us, the nr 50 and the nr 62 car, which is now third in the Championship.

3rd in N-GT : Mike Jordan - JWR Porsche 996 GT3-RS : "We missed the window this morning, as I just could not get the right set-up on the car. I was rather annoyed with myself as we know Donington really well. We made some dramatic changes to the car for the afternoon, and Dunlop gave us some brilliant tyres. At the end, we really thought we might be able to rival the Porsches ahead of us, but they were just a bit too far ahead. We're doing the British GT Championship this year, but we do miss coming to this sort of event, and this is a special treat for us. So to make it up into the top three is a great way to start !"

Jaime Melo - nr 17 JMB Racing Ferrari 575 M Maranello (5th in GT): "It was my first time with the car in the wet today; I did six laps to see how the car was; I was very careful as I did not know how it handled in such conditions. And then Karl did a good lap time. It could have been a bit better but he got so much traffic. But we are very confident for tomorrow."

Philipp Peter - nr 11 GPC Giesse Ferrari 575 M Maranello(6th in GT) : "We did some testing in Vallelunga and worked hard on the car; yesterday, in free practice, we were closer to the front than ever at that stage of the weekend. In the rain today, the car was OK, we saw some improvements with the tyres and the car. In the dry conditions we would be able to do our best. I like Donington a lot; I have not had much opportunity to drive so far this weekend."

David Leslie - nr 28 GNM Saleen S7 (10th in GT) : "I have not had much time to drive this weekend; we lost some time yesterday due to a broken driveshaft. The Saleen is very good. I did a few laps in Silverstone earlier this year on the national circuit. It was much easier to drive than I expected; I was impressed. I had forgotten just how quick these big sportscars are, and the constant curves - once you go round Redgate, you are never straight until you get back to McLeans. I did 7 laps in the first free practice session and I'm looking forward to the race to get a good length of time in the car. It's good to be driving again; I know most of the drivers. Although most of them ask why I'm not commentating this weekend - I'll be back behind the microphone for Spa, and can say what I think about them all with first-hand experience !"

Fabrizio De Simone - nr 62 GPC Giesse Ferrari 360 Modena : "The weekend has been quite positive so far. We had a problem in the second session yesterday; the engine stopped, it was just a small problem. But we got some good data in the first session, and we were working in the right direction. This morning, unfortunately, I lost the car and hit the wall, so I lost the session and the front positions. It was nothing big, but then it was just too wet this afternoon. I was fastest in the afternoon, but it was just wetter than the morning session. We would have been at the top without our problems."

Michael Bartels - nr 5 Vitaphone Racing Team Saleen S7 (14th in GT) : "This has not been an easy day. We were not really lucky with our tyre choice in the morning, and then we lost all the times. This afternoon, when we had intermediate tyres on, it started to rain. And when the track started to dry, we were on wets. At the end we had an engine problem, and also we went off one time when we were on intermediates in the wet. The heavy impact over the grass appears to have broken something in the engine. So it is not a good weekend for us. If we have to change the engine, we will have to start from the back, which will not make a big difference, and might even help, as you keep out of the problems at the start, but it still means around 35 seconds to make up. It's going to be a hard one. But we were very competitive in the dry, even with the ballast, but today it has all worked against us. Hopefully tomorrow everything will be under control, we need to score points if we want to fight for the Championship."

Tim Mullen - nr 88 Gruppe M Europe Porsche 996 GT3-RS (5th in N-GT): "We're a bit frustrated as we missed the window in that second session. We put Jonathan in the car and we intended to leave him out until we saw that anyone went quicker than us. And then all of a sudden the track went really quick and Mike Jordan got up to third. As soon as he did that we called Jonathan in and I got in the car. Then it absolutely poured down with rain. The same happened with Scuderia Ecosse - they called Nathan in and put Andrew in the car. But it was too late, the track was absolutely soaked. It's a shame, as we could have gone a bit quicker this morning, we were third up to the last lap when the Maassen/Luhr car got us in the last lap. But this is actually the first time I've ever driven a Porsche, and this morning was my first time in the wet. If we'd had the car the way we wanted it this morning, we could have been third. The team's still learning the car, so we've done all right really. I think the weather will be a bit better tomorrow, but I'm not sure if that will suit us or not-- the wet tends to even things out a bit."

-fia-

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Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Emmanuel Collard , Lucas Luhr , Michael Bartels , Matteo Bobbi , Jaime Melo , David Leslie , Tim Mullen , Stefano Livio , Philipp Peter , Mike Jordan