Racing at Spa-Francorchamps is always special. This time it was on dry asphalt, can not remember when that last happened !
We arrived to Spa on Wednesday for tests. The issues with the brakes had been sorted out and now we where looking for the perfect chassis setup to find the balance between top speed and downforce.
During Fridays Free Practice and Bronze test the car felt really good so we did not do any major changes.
According to the regulations the Bronze driver in the team has to do the qualifying.
My fastest lap during the quali was deleted since I exceeded track limits at some point (two wheels outside the white line) and that resulted in P5 in quali. Dissapointing since my fastest lap would have given us P3. But rules are rules.
Starting from P5 is challenging. And things got even tougher before the race even started. While we drove from the paddock to the start grid one of the GT3 cars ran into the barrier causing a lot of debris on the track...so we had to wait in the cars on the grid while the marshalls cleaned the track. In full racing gear in 35° C
I got a good start and gained one position right away. At the Kemmel straight I was side by side with car #11 (Mélin, racing for Racing Experience) and by Les Combes I managed to pass him.
Once again I was chasing car #3 (Glorieux / DKR Engineering) and 25 minutes into the race I was nose to tail with it. During lap 12 I managed to pass him while we both passed a GT3 car in Blanchemont and I found a gap.
The leader, car #37 (Maulini / Cool Racing) was 24-25 seconds ahead of me all the time and by lap 22 we both went for a pit-stop and driver change.
The team did a great pit-stop and Matthias got out P2 and had at its best a 7 second gap to P1 (car #37)
Matthias did a really good job and drove some really fast laps.
During lap 35 he was however overtaken by car #3 (Hörr / DKR Engineering)
Car #7 (Noble/ Nielsen Racing) was giving Matthias a hard time for several laps and by the end of lap 43 he managed to pass.
After the second pit-stop we where still P4 but during lap 48 (with about 6 minutes left of the race) Matthias was passed by car #23 (Boyd / United Autosports)
Matthias managed to stay in P5 until the chequered flag.
We were aiming for a podium, everyone did their best but this time the other teams where faster. Both Matthias and I should do about one second faster laptimes, but we did not manage to find it now...
I am thankful for another raceweekend with this great team and I know for sure we will be back at the podium soon.
Reloading now for the third round of the season, held at Paul Ricard week 35 (moved from Barcelona due to the covid situation in Spain)
Hope you will join us for that race too!
Le Mans Cup