Farnbacher Loles Racing had a frustrating Memorial Day, finishing 14th and 15th in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series race at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Conn.
Eric Lux of Jacksonville, Fla., started the No. 86 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car from seventh on the 18-car grid. He gained a position at the start, then touched a tire barrier, causing damage to the car's front bodywork and alignment. He pitted for repairs, returned to the track 17th and regained three positions. Leh Keen of Charleston, S.C., took over just past the one-hour mark of the two-hour 32-minute race. He returned to the track 15th and gained one position to finish 14th.
Dominik Farnbacher of Ansbach, Germany, drove the first stint in the No. 87 Porsche. He moved from eighth to second, then handed off to Dirk Werner of Kissenbrück, Germany, from fourth place. Werner returned to the track fifth, gained one place, then pitted for fuel and tires. Back on track, he reported the car's rear sway bar was broken, spun off track and lost the rear wing. He pitted for a check, then had to return to pit lane in the final minutes of the race, when officials required replacement of the car's rear wing. He dropped back to 15th.
car time driver action
86 start Lux
10m Lux tire barrier contact
12m Lux pit – front bodywork repair, fuel
1h04 change pit – Keen in, front bodywork repair, four tires, fuel
1h52 Keen pit – four tires, fuel
87 start Farnbacher
44m change pit – Werner in, four tires, fuel
1h43 Werner pit – four tires, fuel
1h50 Werner reported rear sway bar broken
2h14 Werner off track, lost rear wing
2h16 Werner pit – bodywork check
2h28 Werner pit – rear wing replacement, two minutes
Gregory Loles, team owner: "We expected the Pontiacs and the Mazdas to dominate here. I think the series officials now know they have a problem [equalizing the cars]. I'm confident they are going to address it, so hopefully we'll hear something before the next race and the Porsche can be back in the mix in the Rolex GT class."
Leh Keen, No. 86: "We knew this track was not going to be our best. The plan was to just try to cruise along and see where we were at in the end. We knew there would be some attrition and we hoped maybe we would get lucky on a pit stop and everything would flow for us. Eric got into the wall a little bit and the alignment was messed up pretty bad, so the car was tearing up the rear tires rather quickly. On new tires for the first three or four laps, it felt okay, then slowly the rear deteriorated to the point where there was no choice – I had to pit for new rear tires. We knew it wasn't going to be super-great, but this was worse than what we wanted. We've got to bounce back, like a big, huge bounce ball."
Eric Lux, No. 86: "Going into today's race, we thought we had a pretty quick car. However, after five or eight laps, we developed a massive oversteer out of nowhere. I wasn't expecting it and I had a spin in the last corner, then I had to try to make up positions. We noticed the left-rear tires were delaminating and we had to deal with that problem for the rest of the race. Leh did a great job hanging onto the car – it was a pretty demonic car today. I'm just glad it's back in one piece and we can move on."
Dominik Farnbacher, No. 87: "I had a very good start and the car felt very good for 10, 12 laps. I made up a lot of places and I was second for a short time. But I could not keep the pace of the Pontiacs and the Mazdas – they overtook me like I was driving a very small Fiat against a Ferrari. For sure, it's a disappointing weekend for Farnbacher Loles and Porsche, but we showed that we were the best Porsche team in the beginning. I want to say thank you, the crew did an awesome job the whole week. I feel very comfortable with this team. Let's see what the next race will do. We'll have Wolf [Henzler] back in the boat. I think that's a good sign because he is on a lucky wave at the moment. I think Dirk and I can get up on this wave and maybe we can win the next race."
Dirk Werner, No. 87: "Obviously, it's a pretty rough season so far for us. Although it was clear from the beginning that we would not win here, we still hoped that we could finish as the best Porsche or at least get some points. On the data, it looked like I was shifting down and released the clutch, but the gear box didn't have a gear in it, it was between the gears. I pressed the clutch again, shifted down once more, but then first gear came in, the rear axle locked up and I spun out. The car went into the tire wall and the rear wing was gone. Then the officials made us stop a second time to get the wing on again. I think there's not much more to say. I hope it gets better ..."