Primat relishes return to Le Mans Series action after first Le Mans 24- hour finish After finishing the Le Mans 24 Hours for the first time less than two-weeks ago, Pescarolo Sport driver Harold Primat is relishing this weekend's third round of...
Primat relishes return to Le Mans Series action after first Le Mans 24- hour finish
After finishing the Le Mans 24 Hours for the first time less than two-weeks ago, Pescarolo Sport driver Harold Primat is relishing this weekend's third round of the Le Mans Series, the Nurburgring 1000kms.
Primat finished 13th overall and sixth in class at La Sarthe, having fought back from 43rd position at one stage after losing 90 minutes in the pits with an oil leak. Now, as the Le Mans Series springs back into life following a two-month break, the Geneva-based driver is hoping to move up the championship table with a strong showing in Germany.
The Nurburgring is a circuit at which Harold has plenty of experience, having produced strong performances there in 2005 and 2006, where he finished fifth in class. "I enjoy racing at the Nurburgring." Primat admitted. "In 2005, when I drove for Rollcentre, we fought with the Audi of Allan McNish early in the race and in 2006 we were second to the Pescarolo before we had a problem with the car, so it's a place that holds good memories for me. Pescarolo Sport has also got a lot of experience there from the past couple of years.
"Le Mans is such a long race that a six-hour 1000km race now seems almost like a sprint race!" continued Primat. "Even though it was only a short time ago, I'm still really excited to be back in the car. A 24-hour race takes a lot out of you physically but I still can't wait for Friday!"
Primat and co-driver Christophe Tinseau's number 17 Pescarolo-Judd 01 will benefit from the new 2007 aero package for the first time in the Le Mans Series, whilst the team has also made some other developments to the car since Le Mans.
"It will be interesting to see how the new aero helps us and if we can close the gap to the diesel-powered Peugeots and pull away from the other petrol cars." Harold said. "The team have also worked hard on some new developments to the front of the car which will give us a bit more grip in the slow and mid-speed corners. That could be important because it's a circuit where you need good stability under braking and then good front end grip on turn in."
Primat and Tinseau currently lie sixth in the LMP1 drivers' championship, but with just four points covering 12 drivers, the standings are very finely balanced behind the leading Peugeot of Pedro Lamy and Stephane Sarrazin. Harold admits that, whilst he hasn't set any targets for this weekend, the aim is always to be the best finishing non-diesel car.
"It's important to try and be the best of the fuel powered cars," Harold said. "We would like to be up there competing with our Pescarolo Sport team mates Jean-Christophe Boullion and Emmanuel Collard in the number 16 car, because they have been the bench-mark for the non-diesel cars this year and if we are running on their pace then it shows we are getting stronger."
Team boss Henri Pescarolo revealed a little more about what new developments that are expected on the car this weekend. "We've done some work on the front suspension geometry and also on the rear suspension. This should help us to be quicker at a circuit like the Nurburgring. The track is one of the slowest in the championship so we will run with more downforce than anywhere else. Despite the fact that it's not a high-speed circuit, it will still be difficult to match the performance of the diesel-powered Peugeots, but we must aim to be the highest placed non-diesel cars. Harold was thrilled to finish his first Le Mans 24 Hours, although understandably a little disappointed with the engine-related problem during the night, so I'm sure he's looking forward to challenging at the front this weekend."