Istanbul: Alex Yoong race report

Starter Motor Woes Stopped RfH While Second On Lap 62 Yoong's 2 hour stint in Dome Mugen proved encouraging for the team The RfH team of Jan Lammers and Alex Yoong made an early exit in lap 62 during the inaugural Le Mans Series race in Istanbul...

Starter Motor Woes Stopped RfH While Second On Lap 62
Yoong's 2 hour stint in Dome Mugen proved encouraging for the team

The RfH team of Jan Lammers and Alex Yoong made an early exit in lap 62 during the inaugural Le Mans Series race in Istanbul while lying in second spot behind the eventual winner Pescarolo Sport near the two-hour mark. The reason was a broken starter.

Pescarolo Sport with E. Collard and J-C Boullion won the race which was cut short from six to four hours because the organisers had made a calculation mistake in the amount of fuel to bring to Istanbul.

Yoong had set the fastest time at the one and a half hour mark then and was making good progress towards the 2 hour mark driver change pitstop until their exit, racing just behind the Pescarolo.

Despite the early exit, Jan Lammers was satisfied with the first LMS weekend: "We have learned a lot and gathered a lot of information. At the start the car was doing great, we were only half a second per lap behind the Pescarolo and our top speed was very high. We had to retire because vibrations had killed off the starter. The same thing happened to our other starters earlier on. We faced this problem all weekend together with some electronic issues. We couldn't find the cause but we think that we have found it now."

"We have another engine this year, a Mugen. Engine vibrations affected the subframe where the gearbox and the engine are located and this damaged the starter. We let Alex start the race today because I wanted him to get the competitive time on our car and was concerned about reliability. It was very important that we came here. The information we have gathered matches our findings from the test at Paul Riccard and that is very encouraging for Le Mans."

Yoong who had driven nearly two hours by the time of the team's exit was happy with his experience gained from Istanbul, saying, "The car is fun to drive and in the quicker corners feel similar to an F1 car because of all the downforce they generate. It's only in the slow corners that you really feel the extra weight but can still be aggressive with it. I like to thank Jan for the opportunity as well as the team members who had all worked very hard despite the difficulties we were facing with the car's electricals and starter."

The next round of the Le Mans Series will be at the famous Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium on the 12th to 14th of May 2006. It will be another six hour long 1000km race where RfH will field Jan Lammers with Alex Yoong again.

-Max Revson - Racing For Malaysia

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About this article
Series European Le Mans
Drivers Jan Lammers , Alex Yoong