Hexis AMR: Back in the role of the hunter

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Although the two HEXIS AMR Aston Martin DB9s did not score podiums in the sixth round of the FIA GT1 World Championship on the twisty Navarra circuit in front of 20.000 spectators, they both finished in the points. The French team, which led the championship during the first half of the season, will find itself in the role of hunter in two weeks’ time on the Paul Ricard HTTT circuit. In the meantime, HEXIS AMR will go to Spa-Francorchamps to prepare for the first 24-Hours event in its history.

Top 5 at Navarra

Christian Hohenadel and Andrea Piccini had a very consistent weekend in their no. 4 Aston Martin. They were seventh on the grid for the qualifying race in which the Italo-German pairing finished fifth, and in the main championship event they scored another top-five placing. Clivio Piccione and Stef Dusseldorp in the other Aston Martin had a more chaotic time in Spain even though they qualified higher up the grid (5th). On Saturday, Clivio was handed a drive-through penalty after a coming together with a Corvette, which dropped no. 3 back to tenth place on the grid on Sunday. Piccione was caught up in the almost inevitable collision at the start losing time and a piece of bodywork in the incident. The Monegasque and his Dutch team-mate fought their way back up to eighth. HEXIS AMR is now back in second place in the FIA GT1 Teams’ World Championship ratings, 20 points behind the German All-Inkl.com M√ľnnich Motorsport Lamborghinis, which dominated the Spanish weekend. Piccini and Hohenadel are lying third in the drivers’ classifications, also 20 points behind the leaders, while Dusseldorp-Piccione are fifth. This has done nothing to undermine the morale of the group led by team manager, Philippe Dumas. ‘It’s a new situation. We have to admit that we were very good in some areas and not so good in others. Maybe I’m being a bit hard, but to win a world championship everything has to be perfect. With four rounds to go to the end, when you’re so near the front the aim’s not to finish in P5! To win the drivers’ championship we need victories, and to win the teams’ world championship, our two cars have to be well placed at the finish. We had a little bit of bad luck but we were never in the right place at the start; we received a penalty, and the strategy and pit stops were nothing to write home about. On the other hand, we had good qualifying sessions, our Astons set the two quickest times in the warm-up on a damp track, and the final result is quite good considering the performance of the Aston Martin on this circuit. The fact of being no longer in the lead is maybe a lesser evil. In terms of pressure, it’s not that easy when you’re being chased. We’ll have to fight at Paul Ricard to get back in front, and we won’t have any excuses as we’ll be racing without ballast at home on a circuit we know well!"

The French round of the FIA GT1 World Championship will be a big event whatever happens. HEXIS AMR has promised to do all it can to fire its fans enthusiasm out on the track, and the team will also call upon its usual creativeness to do the same in the paddock.
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