The GRT Grasser Racing Team completed a positive and rewarding official test day at the famous Spa-Francorchamps circuit for the preparations of the 70th edition Total 24 Hours of Spa, with over 60 cars taking part in yesterday’s session featuring 8 hours of track time.
Competitors were greeted by a sunny circuit, which provided the ideal conditions to prepare for the hardest and longest race of the season, on a day of trouble-free running despite a handful of red flag interruptions in the morning session.
The GRT Grasser Racing Team planned a full programme of fine tuning the Lamborghini Huracán GT3 #19, #63 and #82. All three cars had a long list of items to test, including actual car performance, fine tuning the car to produce the best race pace, ensuring the balance was still effective towards the end of a stint, which for the Spa race means around 23 to 24 laps.
Later this month, on the 28th and 29th July to be precise, the Spa-Francorchamps circuit will host the GT racing highlight of the year, the Total 24 Hours of Spa. It is the blue riband event of the Blancpain GT Series and no fewer than 68 cars are entered this special 70th race, driven by some of the very best drivers in this category in the world!
Mirko Bortolotti (Lamborghini Huracán GT3 #63): “I am happy to be back at Spa. This is one of my favorite races and I always enjoy driving here at one of the best circuits in the world. Today we completed a lot of laps and we will keep working with more commitment.”
Andrea Caldarelli (Lamborghini Huracán GT3 #63): “It was a positive day. We tried different setup’s and mostly focused on the car balance. Now I am looking forward to coming back for the race.”
Marco Mapelli (Lamborghini Huracán GT3 #19): “Today we did a lot of runs, trying to understand new tyres for long runs. Together with the #63 and #82 car we collected a lot of information and the team did a great job for what I want to thank them. Now we definitely understand the way to go forward and now we focus on the race week.”
Raffaele Giammaria (Lamborghini Huracán GT3 #19): “It was a good test and particularly nice to return to Spa-Francorchamps. We collected a lot of information about the different setup’s. Despite a lot of traffic on the track we were able to complete many laps and we found a good balance in the car.”
Ezequiel Perez Companc (Lamborghini Huracán GT3 #19): “In the end it was a day where we struggled to find the right path in terms of setup. We will keep working on it tomorrow with Marco and Raffaele”.
Franck Perera (Lamborghini Huracán GT3 #82): “Today was a good day. We did a really god job to prepare the car for the 24h race. The balance was pretty good and it was a pleasure to be in the top six today, but it’s obviously difficult to predict who will be the best overall. It is very nice to see the improvements of each driver and let’s see what the race week will bring.”
Gottfried Grasser, the Team Owner: “The focus of the test day was for basic race setup. I am quite happy with all our cars in general, especially from the performance side. There was also time to evaluate tyre performance and how the tyres worked with a lot of laps completed, but we still need to work on it. On our qualifying lap performance we had the pace, but we know that this aggressive setup can not work during the race stint. So we need to work on a good race setup that will help to handle the tyre over the race stint distance. There is still a lot to do but I can not wait. The great event starts in three weeks.”
Test day results, combined:
1st #175 Aston Martin (HAIGH/ADAM) 2:19.802
2nd #991 Porsche (HÄRING/LEWIS/TRILLER/RENAUER) 2:19.833 +00.031 secs
3rd #23 Nissan (ORDONEZ/BUNCOMBE/PARRY) 2:19.888 +00.086 secs
4th #7 Bentley (KANE/PEPPER/GOUNON) 2:19.908 +00.106 secs
5th #2 Audi (FRIJNS/MULLER/RAST) 2:19.999 +00.197 secs
6th #8 Bentley (SOUCEK/SOULET/ABRIL) 2:20.218 +00.416 secs
7th #82 GRT Grasser Racing Team 2:20.224 +00.422 secs
8th #117 Porsche (BERNHARD/BAMBER/VANTHOOR) 2:20.229 +0:00.427 secs
9th #63 GRT Grasser Racing Team 2:20.276 +00.474 secs
10th #25 Audi (WINKELHOCK/HAASE/VERVISCH) 2:20.363 +00.561 secs
Source. GRT Grasser Racing Team/Photo. SRO Motorsports Group