Young Driver AMR: Top 10 finish in Portugal

Monday, September 20, 2010

Young Driver AMR: Top 10 finish in Portugal

Young Driver AMR finished in the Top-10 at the seventh round of the GT1-Worldchampionship at Portimão in Portugal. Darren Turner and Tomas Enge were racing in a promising second position in their Young Driver AMR-Aston Martin DBR9 midway trough the race, but struggled with tire performance in the final minutes of the 60-minute race and ultimately finished tenth. Pedro Lamy and Stefan Mücke saw the chequered flag one place behind their teammates in the second Young Driver ANR-Aston Martin DBR9.

Darren Turner started fourth and took third place after the first corner. The 36-year old Brit stayed in third place until the driver change, and the quickest pit stop of the entire race brought Tomas Enge out in second position for the second part of the race. Unfortunately Enge struggled with tire performance. As the tires wore off intensively during his stint, the former Formula One-driver from the Czech Republic couldn’t defend his position and dropped back to tenth position at the end of the race.

Stefan Mücke also had a great start from 15th position and climbed as high as eight in a strong opening stint, before handing the Aston Martin over to Pedro Lamy. The Portuguese sports car-ace found himself under big pressure from a group of competitors in the second half of the race, but maintained the eight position. Due to a spun late in race, Lamy lost eight place and finally finished in eleventh position.

Driver quotes after the Qualifying Race:

Stefan Mücke (#8 Young Driver AMR-Aston Martin DBR9): “At the start a made contact with a competitor and got heavy understeer. I don’t know yet if something broke in the car, which caused the understeer, we have to find out after the race. Due to that I had to be really careful, especially on the brake, but was still able to make up some positions. I could not get everything out of the car, otherwise I would have been able to make up some more positions and close the gap to the leading group. Pedro then put in some good lap times at the beginning of his stint, but then struggled with tire performance.”

Pedro Lamy (#8 Young Driver AMR-Aston Martin DBR9): “My race was not so good. I struggled with the tires and it was not really easy. I couldn’t save the tires, as there was a big group behind me, which made a lot of pressure. Some lap before the finish I lost the grip when I defended my position and unfortunately spun.”

Tomas Enge (#7 Young Driver AMR-Aston Martin DBR9): “We had to pay the price today for our victory in the last race at the Nürburgring. Due to that, we had 40kg success ballast in the car, which made life not very easy in my stint. I drove with used tires that maybe had a little bit too much laps on it and I had a really big tire drop at the end. If the tire performance drops, you can control it until a certain point, but if you are once over that point, it is really hard and you can’t do anything. That was what happened today. We learned a lot this weekend about tire wear and tire strategy and will be better prepared for the next round. We still learn a lot and I guess this was a learning lesson today.”

Darren Turner (#7 Young Driver AMR-Aston Martin DBR9): “My start was not good, but my first corner was. I was able to move up to third. The race was better then expected, as we knew we would struggle here with the tires and our success ballast in the car, I didn’t even expected to finish in tenth position. For the next race we are rid of the success ballast and will attack again!”
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