In yesterday's dramatic eighth round of the FIA GT Championship at Oschersleben, the Graham Nash Motorsport (GNM) No 7 Saleen of Tommy Erdos and Mike Newton stayed out of trouble to secure a provisional fourth place - the team's...
In yesterday's dramatic eighth round of the FIA GT Championship at Oschersleben, the Graham Nash Motorsport (GNM) No 7 Saleen of Tommy Erdos and Mike Newton stayed out of trouble to secure a provisional fourth place - the team's best result of the season.
The omens where good for the British team during Friday's warm-up, where Erdos in the lead Saleen set the fastest time of the afternoon session. In a tightly fought qualifying battle, Tommy's strong showing - 10 minutes before the close of the first session - was good enough to take third place on the grid, just over half a second behind the Saleen of Walter Lechner Jr in pole.
Says Gordon Davies, GNM's team manager: "A front row spot would have been ideal, but we were still happy with Tommy's second row position, given that it was our debut at Oschersleben. The race started well for us, with the No7 Saleen actually putting in the fastest time of the entire race on lap five. By lap nine Tommy was really going for it, challenging Hezemans in the Chrysler Viper for second place. Although the Saleen was all over the Viper's back bumper through the many tight corners, Mike Hezeman's speed on the straight continued to hamper Tommy's attempts to pass. On lap 19 Campbell-Walter in the Lister Storm overtook Tommy, pushing him back to fourth. As the pit stop window opened for the GT class Tommy moved up to second, just before pitting on lap 44 for the changeover to Mike Newton. Mike drove a steady stint and when Tommy got back in the car on lap77 we were in seventh place. An engine misfire was hampering any attempts to get back into the top three but with the retirement of Alliot, after a collision with Campbell-Walter in the Lister on lap 103 we moved up to sixth. The team used the pace car period to attempt to cure the misfire, which enabled Tommy to push hard right to the end to secure a provisional fourth place following the disqualification of Campbell-Walter.
Comments Thomas Erdos: "It was a very tough race but we are making progress. In the race itself the Viper proved to be very strong in terms of straightline speed, and we just couldn't pass. My water temperature went all the way up to 98