and Tinseau at Silverstone
A hard-charging drive from Harold Primat and co-driver Christophe Tinseau earned the Pescarolo Sport drivers a sixth place class finish after they stormed through the field in the Autosport 1000kms at Silverstone.
While the result wasn’t enough to win the unofficial ‘petrol class’ in the overall standings, it represented another fine drive from the Geneva-based Primat and his French colleague and meant another points scoring finish. It also capped a good season for the #17 Pescarolo Sport duo, which has seen an overall podium at Monza and a petrol-class victory at the Le Mans 24 Hours. Meanwhile, the pair have helped Pescarolo to a comfortable third place in the manufacturers’ championship behind works giants Audi and Peugeot.
Changeable weather conditions on Friday and Saturday meant a struggle to find an optimum set-up for qualifying and left the pair’s Pescarolo 01-Judd 19th overall on the starting grid at the ‘Home of British Motorsport’.
A strong opening stint from Primat, which saw him pick up several places in the opening laps and stay within half a second of the Creation AIM ahead, moved the #17 car up the order and Tinseau continued his progress after taking the wheel.
The pair continued to drive quick, consistent stints throughout the race, fighting their way into the top ten by the second hour. Continued progress saw them move up to seventh overall and sixth-in-class by half distance and in the closing stages, a clever strategy from the team meant they didn’t have to pit in the last half hour while the fifth place car did. Unfortunately, a late Safety Car period, one of three in an eventful race, allowed the #15 Creation AIM to take its stop without losing much time and denied Primat and Tinseau a top five finish.
Nevertheless Harold was satisfied with his strong run to sixth which was a fitting finale to what has been his best-ever season in sportscar racing.
Harold said: “We have to be very happy to have come back so strongly after a frustrating qualifying. It is always difficult when you start the race outside the top ten, mainly because of the traffic. There was very little grip early on in my first stint, but both Christophe and I pushed very hard to climb the field during the race. It is a shame the late Safety Car period cost us a chance of fifth place but this has still been a good drive.
“I would like to thank everybody at the team for what has been an excellent season. The guys at Pescarolo Sport and my team-mate Christophe Tinseau have been fantastic this year and together we’ve proved to be a very strong package. I’d also like to thank our partners for their continued support in 2008.”
Tinseau said: “My first stint was very good but in the second stint the new tyres weren’t working as well. We had some understeer throughout the race and I think that might be because we didn’t have the chance to refine our set-up due to the lack of a warm-up session. We’ve got a decent result though and, while it’s a shame not to have finished as top petrol car in the championship, this has still been a good season.”
Team Principal Henri Pescarolo said: “It’s a good way to end the season, with the #16 car on the podium and the #17 car not far away. Harold drove very well despite suffering with the tyres in his first stint so I am very happy.”