Catalunya: Horag Racing race report

Horag Racing Finishes Sixth in LMP2 In Sunday's 1,000 Km of Catalunya BARCELONA, Spain - Circumstances beyond its control kept the Lista Office and Lista, Making Workspace Work-sponsored Horag Racing team out of the top five in the LMP2 class ...

Horag Racing Finishes Sixth in LMP2 In Sunday's 1,000 Km of Catalunya

BARCELONA, Spain - Circumstances beyond its control kept the Lista Office and Lista, Making Workspace Work-sponsored Horag Racing team out of the top five in the LMP2 class Sunday in the 1,000 Kilometers of Catalunya, but the Swiss team still finished sixth in the very competitive, 15-car class with its new Porsche RS Spyder at the Circuit de Catalunya.

Drivers Didier Theys (Scottsdale, Ariz.), Fredy Lienhard (Niederteufen, Switzerland) and Jan Lammers (Katwyk, the Netherlands) drove flawlessly in the Le Mans Series season opener and completed 198 laps around the 4.655-meter, 13-turn road course. Unfortunately two flat tires and a problem with a computer sensor caused them to lose eight laps that they were never able to regain. They did just one less lap than the Saulnier Racing Pescarolo Judd that placed fifth in class. They were 14th overall in the 47-car field.

The team's challenges were spread out throughout the day, as Theys ran over debris and suffered one of the punctures; Lienhard was behind the wheel when an erroneous message from a computer sensor caused a delay while the team checked things over; and then a slow leak caused the second puncture while Lammers was behind the wheel.

Despite the bad luck the team ran extremely competitive laps here. Theys qualified third in the LMP2 class and tenth overall on Saturday with a 1:36.156. He clicked off a quick 1:37.532 in the early going of the race on Sunday, and the car was still quick at the end when Lammers posted the team's fastest race lap with a 1:36.594. Indeed, many times throughout the race the No. 27 was posting the third- and fourth-fastest laps of any car in the field regardless of class as it played catch-up.

Another Porsche RS Spyder won the class, as the drivers of the Van Merksteijn Motorsports No. 34 took the top step of the class podium. The Speedy Racing Team Lola Judd was second, while Team Essex placed third with another Porsche RS Spyder.

The race was broadcast on Eurosport and Motors TV.

The next race will be held at Monza, Italy April 25-27. Horag Racing is the defending LMP2 class winner of that event.

More information is available on horag-racing.com and lemans-series.com.

Post-race quotes follow:

Didier Theys: "We lost eight laps, which is why we got sixth.

"At the end of my first stint I ran over some debris and blew up a tire on the straightaway. It did a lot of bodywork damage, and that cost us four laps. We had to put on a new nose, tape up some bodywork, and get new tires.

"When Fredy did his stint, the telemetry showed a problem with the oil pressure and we needed to investigate what was going on. The sensor was giving the wrong information; the engine was fine. Fredy went back out and did a fine job.

"Then Jan had a puncture at the end, and he had to drive about a half-lap very slowly to get back to the pits. Even the wheel was bent.

"All of these things were things we couldn't control.

"It was a good event for sports car racing. The weather was nice, there was a good crowd of about 28,000 people, the racetrack was good, and it was a good fight."

Fredy Lienhard: "We had a good race. We had some bad luck with some technical issues, but the drivers didn't make any mistakes.

"Around the mid-point of my stint they called me into the pits because a sensor said the oil temperature was too high. We came in and investigated the situation, and decided to continue. It was the right decision, because the sensor was giving a wrong signal; the engine was fine.

"When I went back out, I was able to pass quite a few Prototypes, so I was quite happy.

"Then Jan had a problem with a tire at the end, and we ended up sixth. But for me it was a really good race."

Jan Lammers: "I had a puncture at the end. I think it was a slow leak, and then finally it let go. By then the race had already settled itself, so we just tried to continue until the finish.

"When I was in it, the car was lovely. I was just enjoying myself. I was able to set our fastest lap of the race about eight laps into my stint after I got the new tires.

"We lost some time here due to the engine change on Friday, but by Sunday morning's warm-up we had confirmed that we were on the right path with our set-up. We will just try to do better at the next race, that's all."

Markus Hotz (team owner): "We had to put in a new engine on Friday, so we lost some time we would have used working on the set-up on that. Today in the race we had a good performance, but we were quite a bit unlucky. I always say that you see how good you are as a team in the bad times, and we kept working hard. It wasn't really mechanical problems, so we just have to accept it. Everyone did a good job."

-credit: horag

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About this article
Series European Le Mans
Drivers Jan Lammers , Didier Theys , Fredy Lienhard