WEC resumes at Spa as final preparation for Le Mans

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

If the weather reports from Belgium are to be believed, we could be in for a very entertaining round from Spa Francorchamps as Aston Martin Racing et al prepare themselves for the second round of the 2017 World Endurance Championship.

With an unchanged six man driving squad confirmed for both of the team's two GTE Pro cars, all will be looking for that 'little bit more' as they look to take the challenge back to their class rivals and their newer race car platforms.

The additional drivers of Richie Stanaway in the #95 and Daniel Serra in the #97 both undertook further extensive tyre testing at the Dunlop arranged event at Magney Cours in France two weeks ago so that should definitely help them is the infamous rains in Belgium do appear!

We understand from the team that both the Pro cars Balance of Performance parameters remain the same (as expected) but we believe that any significant running on either inters or wets during the race shall extend their BoP period until after Mexico rather than after Germany as it presently is. The Le Mans 24 BoP is decided upon by a differing system to the FIA WEC's computer programme.

Last year you may recall that it was this event that a truer picture of the Ford GT and Ferrari 488 GTE performance came to light as both platforms disappeared into the sunset with the #97 only securing a podium position by virtue of one Ford crashing out and one Ferrari having engine failure right at the very end. The #95 car crashed out quite spectacularly following contact with an LMP2.

Spa will still be a very difficult round for AMR as they (and everyone else entered) prepare themselves for Le Mans which is now just weeks away. The top end speed of the competition was all too evident at Silverstone with both AMR Pro cars quickly falling off the tail of even the slowest car ahead.

Listening back to the race commentary from Silverstone, the #97 used the race as an extended test for tyre degradation and fuel economy - both key factors now that they only have four sets (plus two jokers) for both qualifying at the race.

The teams best hopes of a podium of course come with the crew of the #98 GTE Am car (Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy and Mathias Lauda) who were so unlucky to have been robbed of a class win at Silverstone due to the irresponsible move of the then second placed Spirit of Race Ferrari at the penultimate corner.

The team will, we are sure bounce back and take stock of their performance relative to their class opposition so barring any technical or accident misfortunes you can certainly never write them off.

Track action of course takes place a day earlier than normal with the first two Free Practice sessions taking place tomorrow, with Qualifying on Friday before the start of the race on Saturday.

  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Technorati
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • Google
  • Reddit
  • Sphinn
  • Propeller
  • Slashdot
  • Netvibes