What the LMP2 and GTE class winning drivers said after the race

Quotes and comments from the successful drivers at the WEC 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps, round two of the 2017 season.

Roman Rusinov – No.26 G-Drive Racing ORECA 07-Gibson, 1st LMP2

“It wasn’t my aim to take the start but I did and then I saw (Romain) Dumas behind me, so I pushed really hard like I was doing qualifying laps.  But this was a mistake because my last ten laps in my second stint were just impossible and I was ten seconds from the pace.  Then we changed our strategy, with Alex (Lynn) doing a super job and then Pierre (Thiriet) did a great job as well, and we could manage the tyres and the car was good.  Thanks to the team, our mechanics did an incredible job today, and to my two teammates.”

Alex Lynn - No.26 G-Drive Racing ORECA 07-Gibson, 1st LMP2

“I was quite worked up when I got into the car for the last stint as I was expecting to have a big battle with Bruno Senna because Pierre held off Nico Prost for a long, long time.  I knew it was going to come down to a matter of seconds, track position was extremely important at that point. 

“But, by the time I was half way through my stint, the gap was over a minute and I just had to triple stint the right-side tyres.  It was a big task as the tyres degraded a lot, but we did it.  A big thanks to the team as well, they have worked really hard to put everything together since Silverstone and here we are on the top step, so I am really happy.”

Pierre Thiriet - No.26 G-Drive Racing ORECA 07-Gibson, 1st LMP2

“It was an amazing race and the battle with Nico (Prost) was so good, I enjoyed it a lot.  It was a good fight and fair, just like we want to go racing.  Roman and Alex did a great job and I just had to do my part.  I had a good pace, I just had to try and not to destroy the tyres.”

Davide Rigon – No.71 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE, 1st LMGTE Pro

“I hope we won’t have to wait another year for a win [after winning at Spa in 2016] and we continue at the next race!  To be honest it was an incredible job by all the team.  Sam especially was managing the tyres very well in the rain, he never made a mistake.  I’m very proud of the team and we were prepared for a good result so I am very happy today.”

Sam Bird – No.71 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE, 1st LMGTE Pro

[Talking about the wheel-to-wheel battle with the No.51 sister Ferrari] “It was an intense battle with Alessandro, but it’s racing.  The fans want to come and see exciting battles and that’s what they saw today.  It was pretty cool but it was a really tough race.  We’ve never seen tyres do what they did today in the race, so we were a little bit in the unknown.  When I was told I had to double stint at the end, I was a little bit worried how the tyres would be but we managed it really well. 

“Our engineers have given us a mega car this weekend.  Everybody at AF Corse and Ferrari have worked so hard after Silverstone to put us back on the pace and we did that, so I’m really happy.”

Pedro Lamy – No.98 Aston Martin Racing Vantage, 1st LMGTE Am

“It’s a great result but it looked easier than it was because we didn’t have the fastest car on track.  I had a good stint but we got a penalty so we lost that.  But then Paul made the difference against all the other bronze drivers, which made our life much easier.  Mathias did a great stint too. Today looked easy but we expect a big fight until the end of the season.”

Paul Dalla Lana – No.98 Aston Martin Racing Vantage, 1st LMGTE Am

“It is a privilege to race here at Spa and I’d forgotten that this is our third win here.  We consider this to be one of the greatest tracks in the world, so to come here on a sunny Saturday and be able to fight and enjoy is a special thing.  In addition to winning just being here is a great experience and I am so happy. 

“Our race was a little tougher than it looked and I had to push in my stints.  We got a little bit lucky with the traffic with the prototypes passing us, so to survive that and come out with the win is great.  To head to Le Mans leading the championship is nice and now we are excited for the next one.”

Mathias Lauda –  No.98 Aston Martin Racing Vantage, 1st LMGTE Am

“In my first stint I was on used tires and it was tough, but I was still able to bring the car back with a lead of just over twenty seconds and keep ourselves ahead. It was a stressful race for us as we never had the outright fastest car and we didn’t set the fastest lap, but that doesn’t matter. We did the best job with the strategy, the pit stops and there were no mistakes by any of the drivers”.