'Balance of performance' adjustments may be hurting the entry.
Houston-based Risi Competizione has been on the back foot compared to its rivals since arriving at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park for the TUDOR United Sportscar Championship’s first visit north of the border.
With its Ferrari 458 Italia suffering from a marked lack of downforce and therefore unable to compete on an equal basis with competitors in the GTLM class, it was disappointing but perhaps not altogether surprising that Pierre Kaffer qualified in 9th place for tomorrow’s 2h45 race, the 6th round of the season for the category. His best time of 1:16.340, set on his eighth lap, was 1.1 seconds from pole position which was claimed by Canadian driver, Kuno Wittmer, in the No.93 SRT Dodge Viper.
The weather has been fine and warm for the practice and qualifying days but there is a strong possibility of rain for race day which may well favor Risi’s quest for a good points-scoring finish. While the track can be extremely slippery and unpredictable while wet, both Giancarlo Fisichella and Pierre Kaffer possess a huge amount of experience with the F458 in all types of conditions.
Team Manager, David Sims, commented: “It’s been a pretty tough few days, and there appears to be some discrepancy in the GTLM Balance of Performance which is definitely working against us. If it rains tomorrow, it will definitely shake things up and that might work well for us providing we stay out of trouble.”
Pierre Kaffer said after qualifying: “The last lot of changes we made before qualifying were positive, the car is well balanced and we improved on what we had before, but we’re still behind the others. We’ll study the data overnight and hopefully tomorrow it will start to rain and then everything’s possible. The boys did a good job, and the car is nice to drive, but we’re just not quick enough.”