COMPETITION HOTTING UP FOR THE NISSAN GT-Rs The FIA GT1 World Championship rolls into France this weekend, to the western tip of the glorious French Riviera for the midsummer event of 2010. The Paul Ricard circuit at Le Castellet plays host to...
COMPETITION HOTTING UP FOR THE NISSAN GT-Rs
The FIA GT1 World Championship rolls into France this weekend, to the western tip of the glorious French Riviera for the midsummer event of 2010. The Paul Ricard circuit at Le Castellet plays host to the six manufacturers, 12 teams and 24 drivers who are fighting for glory in this inaugural season of 'GT1 World'. The two Nissan GT-R teams: Swiss Racing Team and Sumo Power GT, are refreshed and ready for action after the traditional break in the season brought about by the Le Mans 24 Hours in June.
The Sumo Power GT team headed to Snetterton last week to take advantage of the break and complete a two-day test.
"I'm really happy with how things are going at Sumo Power GT," commented Team Manager, Allen Orchard. "We have a new race engineer, Ian Smith, who is already working well within the team. He has a very methodical approach to engineering and I'm looking forward to seeing that in action at Ricard. We have just completed a thorough test at Snetterton and we made good progress. Our target for Ricard is to get both of our Nissan GT-Rs up there this time."
Jamie Campbell-Walter and Warren Hughes, drivers of the No.22 Sumo Power GT Nissan GT-R, are currently in sixth place in the driver's championship, the highest-placed of the Nissan drivers.
"Warren and I are in a pretty good position now so we need to make sure we score points at every round," explained Campbell-Walter. "Brno was tough for us but we were quick, even with the 40kgs of success ballast from Silverstone. The ballast has gone now so hopefully we will be competitive at Ricard. I've never actually raced there but I've done thousands of miles in testing, including two 24-hour tests, so I know my way around! I think the Nissan GT-R will go well there as it has some long straights and some flowing corners, like Brno and Silverstone, which suit the car."
After a difficult start to the season, Swiss Racing Team has also made the most of the break, focussing on the set up of its Nissan GT-Rs.
"We have finally managed to get some breathing space and have had time to concentrate on the cars," said Team Principal, Othmar Welti. "The first three races came very quickly after each other for us, especially after the crash at Silverstone left us with a lot of work to do to catch-up. Now though we have had time to run a small test where we worked a lot on the set up of the Nissan GT-R. We have shown that we have the pace in the race so now we need to show it in qualifying. We tested at Ricard earlier in the year and I am feeling optimistic about this event."
Henri Moser, driver of the No.3 Swiss Racing Team Nissan GT-R, echoes Welti's comments and can't wait to get back on track at Ricard.
"I'm very much looking forward to Ricard as I am confident we can be quicker there," he said. "The team found some pace at Brno and has also tested there since and had the opportunity to improve the set up. We think that Ricard will be a good track for the Nissan GT-R."