SPA VICTOR TINCKNELL BIDDING FOR REPEAT IMOLA RACE WIN
Harry aims for first European Le Mans Series race win of 2015
Harry Tincknell competes for the British JOTA Sport team on Sunday (17 May) aiming to score a second consecutive race win at the Autodromo Enzo & Dino Ferrari track.
Tincknell raced at the historic 3.081-mile Italian track, formerly known as Imola, for the first time in the corresponding race last May and scored a win and impressively set the fastest race lap.
As last year, Simon Dolan and Filipe Albuquerque partner Harry in the four hour race with the trio aiming to go one place better than they recorded in the opening European Le Mans Series race at Silverstone (11 Apr).
Having been denied victory by a mere 0.370secs at Silverstone, a 432-mile race which at times included some dubious, over zealous manoeuvres by his LM P2 rivals, Tincknell more recently recorded an emphatic class win with JOTA in the FIA World Endurance Championship race at Spa-Francorchamps (2 May).
Immediately following the six-hour race in Belgium, Tincknell spent three days testing the Nissan GT-R LM NISMO at NCM Motorsports Park in Kentucky to continue the final preparations for next month’s Le Mans 24 Hours. The focus of the latest test in America was to complete longer runs with the pair of Nissan GT-R LM NISMOs and continue to build on the performance of the car in the run up to Le Mans. There has been a change in Nissan’s driver line-up for Le Mans with Harry now sharing his Nissan with Michael Krumm (D) and Alex Buncombe (GB).
Harry says: “The revised Gibson is going to be rapid around Imola this year so considering we started last year’s race from pole-position, won and set the fastest race lap, bodes very well for us – especially on the back of a truly dominant performance in the WEC race at Spa.
“I’ve got fantastic memories from my debut there last year. Imola is a great track and is already one of my favourites. It’s ‘old school’, especially the section where you come down the hill and into the double right, which is really cool. It’s challenging with the traffic but very enjoyable. We were quick there last year there is no reason why we won’t be fighting there for the win again.
“The opening ELMS race at Silverstone was really good. I made a mistake in qualifying but apart from that, the race weekend was pretty solid. I was in the car at the end and vying for the lead but didn’t think the driving standards were particularly good at times by some of our opposition but that’s now history.
“It’s great that every Nissan NISMO test brings progress. The closer we get to the pace, the harder it is to find time but we continue to improve. The next big test for us is the Le Mans test day, which in itself is a huge challenge. Le Mans is the hardest race in the world and we want a respectable result. We’ve had delays but we are working hard. We go there with our feet on the ground but we will push to get the best result we possibly can.”
Harry’s Imola fact file:
Debut: 2014 European Le Mans Series.
Most recent: 2014 ELMS.
Comments: “Imola has got a lot of history – for both good and bad reasons. Before last year, I hadn’t any previous experience but it’s undoubtedly a special place. It’s a tough track to pass on because it’s tight and twisty which will make traffic management key in the race. There is not much time to ‘rest’ so it’s quite testing physically but even more so mentally as you consistently have to calculate your moves and think many corners ahead, while still driving as fast as you can. There are also some big kerbs round Imola so making the car able to cope with this is something the team has to consider when working out the optimum set up.”