Solid start for the 2015 season

Solid Start at Silverstone for Marc VDS

Silverstone, Great Britain – April 12 2015: BMW Team Marc VDS began their European Le Mans Series GTE campaign with fourth place at the 4 Hours of Silverstone for Henry Hassid, Jesse Krohn and Andy Priaulx.

After Priaulx had qualified the car fourth in the morning’s qualifying, Hassid took the start. Sensible driving and quick reflexes meant that he avoided a big accident as several cars spun at turn one. However, he was shuffled back in the pack and then suffered as he struggled to get the tyres to temperature. Midway through the first hour, he was punted into a spin by another car, losing 30 seconds as he was unable to restart the car straight away.

He handed the car to Jesse Krohn after one hour, in seventh place. The Finn was immediately on the pace, and over the course of his stint was regularly the fastest GTE on the track. He kept pushing and managed to make it to fourth place He, too was punted into a spin by a prototype car, though avoided too much time loss. However, he was a little too eager at the restart after the safety car, passing a competitor before the start-finish line. The car was given a stop-go penalty.

It was Priaulx who served it, during his final stint. Though his pace over the course of the stint was good, there was little chance of improvement after the stop-go and with the tyres beginning to wear, he relaxed to take the flag in fourth place.

Henry Hassid, #52 BMW Z4 GTE
“The first corner was crazy – you just have to escape from this situation. Don’t think about it, just go through. It was absolutely key to stay on track. I had a lot of problems, because the tyres weren’t very hot at the beginning, so I had to stay on the track and out of trouble. I did my best. Half an hour after the start, an LMP2 hit me, and I lost around 30 seconds trying to restart the car. Without that, and the stop-go, I think we had a good chance of a podium.”

Jesse Krohn, #52 BMW Z4 GTE
“That was the longest stint I’ve ever driven in a GT car, so it was quite good. I felt like I had good pace, but it was very difficult to make the tyres last a whole stint. We’ve still got a lot to learn on them. I’m pleased to take some points home, it’s a reasonable start to the championship, and I look forward to plenty more time in this car.”

Andy Priaulx, #52 BMW Z4 GTE
“We’ve had very limited time on the tyre, and the grip wasn’t brilliant all the way through. I never really switched the tyre on, throughout my stint. We needed to finish, but we don’t want to just finish races, we want to be on the podium. The incidents didn’t help us, and I think we could’ve had a very good chance of a podium without them. For the next race we’ve just got to work with the tyres and find a set up that better suits the car, because I feel the potential is there.”

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Originally published by Marc VDS Racing team 11 Apr 2015
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