A HOT AFTERNOON IN SAO PAULO The Brazilian sunshine played a big part in the racing at Interlagos this afternoon, with many of the FIA GT1 World Championship runners struggling to manage their tyres in the soaring temperatures. Peter Dumbreck ...
A HOT AFTERNOON IN SAO PAULO
The Brazilian sunshine played a big part in the racing at Interlagos this afternoon, with many of the FIA GT1 World Championship runners struggling to manage their tyres in the soaring temperatures. Peter Dumbreck and Michael Krumm were unable to repeat their podium performance of yesterday but still finished a creditable sixth after a tough race. Seiji Ara and Max Nilsson were in the top finishing Swiss Racing Team Nissan GT-R in 16th place and Karl Wendlinger and Henri Moser took 18th place. The sister Sumo Power Nissan GT-R unfortunately retired during the second half of the race.
Peter Dumbreck made a good start from second place on the grid and set off after the pole position Aston Martin. He brought the No.23 Nissan GT-R into the pits for Michael Krumm in second place and with only a couple of seconds separating the top cars the pit stop was crucial. The stop went well but a slight stutter at the getaway dropped Krumm right down to fifth. Although he could maintain the pace of the leaders during his run Krumm was unable to pass and was then unceremoniously barged out of the way on the last lap by a Ford GT that stole fifth place away.
Seiji Ara was careful at the start in the No.4 Swiss Racing Team Nissan GT-R. With a lot of mid pack 'rubbing' going on he decided to avoid a collision and play it safe. He lost a position but managed to regain one during his run. Unfortunately he then received a drive-through penalty for speeding in the pit lane when he braked a little too late on his way in to hand over to Max Nilsson. The Swede then brought the Nissan GT-R home in 16th place.
Karl Wendlinger also had a steady start in order to avoid all the pushing and shoving. He ran competitively throughout his stint, despite the traffic. Henri Moser took to the wheel for the second half and could be seen posting times on a par with the frontrunners as he was clear of traffic. He crossed the finishing line in 18th place.
The No.22 Sumo Power Nissan GT-R had a tough afternoon today. Jamie Campbell-Walter lost a couple of places at the start then a couple more when he was pushed wide while struggling with a car that he believed wasn't as well balanced as yesterday. Warren Hughes jumped in for the run to the flag but ultimately retired with an unidentified vibration.
The pack up is now fully underway and the Nissan GT1 teams are bound for Argentina for the final race of the season. The Sumo Power GT team has dropped to fourth in the team's championship table but the scores are close and second place is still very much there for the taking.
WHAT THE DRIVERS SAY...
"I was very happy with my start. I got hit a little at turn one but that didn't affect me. I could match the pace of Tomas Enge in the lead quite comfortably; each time he pulled away a bit I could catch him again. Michael had a longer stint than me so it was tougher for him, especially after we lost out in the pits. To be fair though we just didn't have the pace to win. I knew it was going to be tough today but I'm surprised it was that tough."
"It's a shame we couldn't take more points out of the weekend. A podium - and the points that go with it - would have been good today but we were a little bit too slow. We will have to work harder for next weekend in Argentina."
"We came here with an extra 20kgs and it has hurt us. It has been incredibly hot so the tyres are on the limit more than ever before. Qualifying was okay but the spin we had in yesterday's race left us in 14th for today. We made some changes to the car overnight but for me the car wasn't as good as yesterday. Onwards and upwards though so let's go to San Luis and see what we can do there."
"The car was good today; very consistent and well balanced. I lost a couple of positions on lap one but this was for safety's sake. I could see a lot of aggressive driving so I eased off to save the car. I had the tyres that I had in qualifying and they were very good."
"I had a very stable car today and it was only at the very end of the race that my tyres went off. It was good to be able to do the same lap times as the guys at the front but when you are already half a lap behind there is little you can do. It's disappointing but I am looking forward to going to the last race now. I've been to San Luis before and it is a great track."
"There was a lot going on at the start so I held back to avoid a crash. I managed to overtake one car and the Nissan GT-R was very good. I had a bit of oversteer in the last five laps but otherwise the car was good. Unfortunately I braked a little late when I came in for my pit stop and received a drive-through penalty."
Swiss Racing Team:
No.3: Karl Wendlinger (AUT) & Henri Moser (SUI)
No.4: Seiji Ara (JPN) & Max Nilsson (SWE)
Sumo Power GT:
No.22: Jamie Campbell-Walter (GB) & Warren Hughes (GB)
No.23: Michael Krumm (GER) & Peter Dumbreck (GB)