Steep hills to climb in Spa for AMR

Friday, May 05, 2017

Three Free Practice and a Qualifying sessions later, the pair of Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GTE Pro cars face an uphill battle if they are to competitively contest the 6 Hours of Spa when the green flag drops tomorrow afternoon.

Being the first time that Daniel Serra has competitively driven the Belgium circuit, it wasn't surprising that his #97 car spent the first Free Practice session of yesterday morning at the foot of the timing screen as he and his co drivers undertook their normal 'house keeping' and familiarisation activities out on track. Their sister #95 car finished only just above them.

Later came the second FP session when Marco Sorensen, who clearly hadn't remembered the team script when he plonked his #95 car that he shares with Nicki Thiim and Richie Stanaway at the top of the GTE Pro list!

Great - was that the improvement that we were all looking for?

Then came the final FP session of this morning and it was back to an unsurprising situation normal when both Ford GT's and Ferrari 488's stretched their legs again as they all eked away still further from the chasing Porsche's and Aston's. Their ability to continually increase their overall speed almost at will remains slightly disconcerting.

Finally this afternoon came the 20 minute qualifying session for the GTE field with, as normal, two drivers each setting their best lap time within that time frame. Following the same format as Silverstone the #95 was driven by Thiim/Sorensen, the #97 by Adam/Turner and the #98 GTE Am car qualified by Pedro Lamy and Paul Dalla Lana.

As the session clocked by it was difficult to keep track of times as the series timing App kept glitching.

The nett result come the end of the session was that both the #95 and #97 cars facing an increased deficit of over two seconds to the pole setting #71 AF Corse Ferrari which is an increase to that experienced at Silverstone.

Meanwhile, the #98 GTE Am left it late to claim their second class pole of the season as Pedro Lamy went out for a second bite of the cherry to claim pole on his last flying lap. They also face an intense battle in their class especially after most of their class rivals showed constantly quicker lap times during the earlier sessions.

The race will be what it will be and there will be surprises and heart ache. The race starts at 14.30hrs (local)

Photo credits - AMR
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