Matech Competition final qualifying report

For the legendary race at Le Mans, Matech Competition chose Thomas Mutsch, Romain Grosjean and Jonathan Hirschi for car no.60. All three have already claimed a podium together at the Spa 1000km. The line up for car 61 remains as originally ...

For the legendary race at Le Mans, Matech Competition chose Thomas Mutsch, Romain Grosjean and Jonathan Hirschi for car no.60. All three have already claimed a podium together at the Spa 1000km.

The line up for car 61 remains as originally planned: a 100% female Swiss team this has never been seen at Le Mans before! Cyndie Allemann, Rahel Frey and Natacha Gachnang share the driving duties.

The first free practice was difficult for the team following two crashes, but the Matech Ford GT1 came back to the track for the first qualifying practice session at night on Wednesday 9th. A challenging apprenticeship, because a few red flags during the tests forced our 6 rookies to wait in the garages while they all had to drive 3 laps at night to be qualified.

The qualifying practice on Thursday was much more successful for the Swiss team thanks to the 2nd position scored very quickly by the drivers of the Matech Ford GT1 no.60. During the second part of the session, all the drivers came back on track and raced without incident and finished the qualifying in P3, with a lap time of 3'55''583 for Romain Grosjean, Thomas Mutsch and Jonathan Hirschi with car no.60. Car 61 finished the qualifying practice with a lap time of 4'01'628.

Having discovered the mythical circuit of the 24 Hours du Mans, 6 Matech Competition drivers will discover the excitement of the public during the Parade of the Drivers, from 6 pm till 7 pm in Le Mans.

Team Manager

Martin BARTEK: "After a bad free practice with 2 cars damaged but quickly repaired by the team's great ability, the drivers could drive 2 well prepared cars and we started learning Le Mans one day later. We have 2 Matech Ford GT1 in the Top 3 what is already really great for Matech. It's a 24 hours race so we will see who will reach the end of the race and as well who won't have any problem. The ladies drove carefully because of the accident in the free practice but they improve regularly their performance today. We will be there on Saturday!"

Ford GT1 Matech no.60

Thomas MUTSCH: "This day was really more positive than yesterday for Matech, we reached our objectives today. We can improve our lap times. I think that each driver had enough time to learn the track. The track wasn't as fast as yesterday I think we have a great chance for the race. We have a really good car and we will see what will happen".

Romain GROSJEAN: "This was a positive day for us, better than yesterday. Our car is really safe and well balanced for the race".

Jonathan HIRSCHI: "This second day of qualifying practice was more positive than the first one. Now I trust the track and the car and I think it's the same for the others. The balance of the car is better than yesterday, I feel good with it and I really trust in it now".

Ford GT1 Matech no.61

Cyndie ALLEMANN: "The positive assessment of the day is that we drove more laps than yesterday although the weather was not very good at the beginning, we lost time during the 1st session. We raced some laps at night and now we know a little bit more the track. Our job is not perfect but I'm sure we will improve it during the race on this very long track".

Rahel FREY: "I'm quite happy of our performance today because we did our best as possible and the car has no damage so I really want to thank the team because they had a lot to do yesterday. I think we have to do some more laps and get used to the track and then we have just to enjoy the race".

Natacha GACHNANG: "It was great because we can drive during the day and night today to learn more than yesterday. For the moment we are not as fast as the others who drove more than us yesterday and who are self confident on the track but I'm sure we will do a good race".

-source: matech-competition.ch

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About this article
Series Le Mans
Drivers Natacha Gachnang , Romain Grosjean , Cyndie Allemann , Rahel Frey , Thomas Mutsch , Jonathan Hirschi