Portimao: Pescarolo Sport race report

Only Victory Matters!! No victories for Pescarolo Sport since the Jarama 1000 Km in 2006. What went wrong? ... Consider the ACO regulations about the petrol/diesel equivalence and you'll know. Three frustrating years yet with a significant...

Only Victory Matters!!

No victories for Pescarolo Sport since the Jarama 1000 Km in 2006. What went wrong? ... Consider the ACO regulations about the petrol/diesel equivalence and you'll know. Three frustrating years yet with a significant number of podium finishes.

Victory at last, and what a victory!

There couldn't have been a better moment in these troubled times. With only one Pescarolo-Judd entered in the 3rd Le Mans Series round, Henri Pescarolo was knowingly taking a risk. On the other hand, back in 2006, the `Greens' Grand Slam was achieved with only one car offering 5 victories out of 5 races. As connoisseurs, drivers, engineers, mechanics, management, all enjoyed the flavour of an exceptional night race on the new Algarve Circuit in Portugal.

A number of teams had already been at Portimao, but it was a brand new circuit for the Pescarolo Sport drivers. Short stretches of straight lines, blind corners and impressive `whoops' on a bumpy surface that were demanding for the cars and drivers' organisms.

Following a number of modifications on the Pescarolo-Judd since the Le Mans race, Claude Galopin had very high expectations. Right from the beginning of the free practice sessions, the car proved fast and sharp and was never lower than second in the standings although the qualifying session ended up with a disappointing 7th position on the grid.

It would be a complicated start for JC Boullion whose mission was to fight his way up to the lead. It only took him 23 laps to trail the leading Aston driven by Mucke and with a lot of pressure put on the leader, the Aston spun. The Pescarolo-Judd took the lead on lap 45. Tinseau was taking over for a third stint in the lead, ahead of the Lola-Aston Martin 007 and the Oreca # 10. Tinseau remained in the front until he complained about a problem on the front left. The pit stop was antic ipated, and we discovered a bit of the synthetic grass mats stuck under the nose cowling. Taking advantage of this early stop, the tyres were changed and Tinseau was back in the race in 3rd position, still maintaining pressure on the front runners. The following pit stops saw the Lola and the Pescarolo successively leading the race with Senna / Monteiro in the Oreca remaining third a few seconds behind.

Small inc ident with heavy consequences: this anticipated pit stop would affect the strategy for the Team from La Sarthe. As Boullion was back behind the wheel, catching up the gap with the leading Aston Martin seconds after seconds, he had to build up a 30'' lead to allow for a splash and dash 4 laps before taking the chequered flag. With a magnificent and very consistent drive, Boullion did the job 1 to 2'' quicker than Mucke's Aston - and secured a comfortable half-a- lap margin to be the first crossing the finish line.

-credit: pescarolo.com

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About this article
Series European Le Mans
Drivers Henri Pescarolo