Down at the Prologue...........

Friday, April 06, 2018

What a spectacle day one of this years World Endurance Championship's Prologue has turned out to be under the bright early spring sunshine at the Paul Ricard circuit down in the south of France today.

Thirty five cars arrived for this years two day test which has for the first time a thirty hour continuous test built into its programme for the first time this year, of which one of those cars taking the opportunity to use this restricted access extensive test is the new #95 Aston Martin's Racing Vantage GTE.

Is sister #97 car is also in attendance as well as the full six GTE Pro driver line up, all of whom are now taking their turn to driver the #95 car in this extended test that is now coming up to its half way point on the clock.

Joining the factory team at the circuit are of course the two AMR GTE Am entries of reigning GTE Am Champions Paul Dalla Lana, Mathias Lauda and Pedro Lamy as well as WEC debutants TF Sport with their drivers Salih Yoluc, Euan Hankey and Charlie Eastwood.

Official photo shoots, media briefing have all been part of the order of today with the brightly coloured circuit providing a fine backdrop to the dazzling coloured new Vantage's as well as the older 2016 specification cars still used in the GTE Am class.

At our briefing with AMR team principle Paul Howarth last month, we were told that the emphasis for the AMR team at the Prologue would be a full and final stress test of their complete package of systems - car, drivers, mechanics, the whole nine yards would be on the cards for one last inspection as the start of the new 'Super-Season' gets ever closer to its opening round at Spa Francorchamps at beginning of May.

Clearly, some cars have suffered with some minor issues, including the #95 which brought out a full course yellow after having stopped on track. Nothing to worry about there as that is precisely why these teams need an extended test like the Prologue despite all their previous test mileage over the winter.

In the GTE Am class, just under two seconds separated the nine car field at the end of their test day this evening with both AMR cars sitting at the middle of the field time wise with the #98 AMR car having completed 120 laps just ahead of the #90 TF Sport car which completed only 87 laps in comparison.

In GTE Pro, drivers Alex Lynn, Jonny Adam and Maxime Martin racked up 99 laps between them to finish their first day of the test midfield in the ten car table and 1.7 seconds off the pace setting Porsche before moving over the assist in the #95 car which has now completed over 365 laps in its extended test. Whats apparent here is that this car is obviously running to a delta lap time - nearly two seconds down to the pace setting Porsche and is at present the only GTE Pro car on track.

This final dress rehearsal continues into tomorrow with the final test session starting at at 09:00hrs (local) for cars not entered into the 30 hours continuous test and with the event scheduled to finish at 16:00hrs local.

Photo credits - AMR / TF Sport
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Technorati
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • Google
  • Reddit
  • Sphinn
  • Propeller
  • Slashdot
  • Netvibes