SUCCESS FOR MITSUBISHI WITH EVO X RACE DEBUT
Britcar 24hr Endurance, Silverstone - 20th & 21st September 2008 ~
New Mitsubishi completes 24-hour endurance event on debut outing 400 BHP Lancer Evolution X race-car proves 100% reliable first time out Drivers and technicians delighted with car’s performance The racing debut for the Works Mitsubishi Motors UK Lancer Evolution X in this weekend’s Britcar 24-hour race at Silverstone was hailed as a great success by the team, the brand new car completing the whole event without missing a beat.
Driven by James Kaye, Andy Barnes, Mark Lemmer and Jay Wheals, the team crossed the line fifth in class and 25th overall after covering a race-distance of 517 laps and 1,651 miles.
The first stint was driven by Kaye, who had to stay in place for almost an hour under safety car conditions following an accident involving other cars.
After two hours, in the first pit-stop, he reported that the car was running perfectly, and as the race continued into the night the Evolution’s lap times became more and more consistent and at one point the team climbed from its start position of 46th to a place inside the top 20. In fact, with the car running so well that the only maintenance required was the routine changing of tyres and brake pads.
Having survived the darkness hours, the team were now determined to make it to the finish and all four drivers did what was required to provide Mitsubishi UK with its first success on the track for many years, crossing the line to finish fifth in class and 25th overall.
At the finish, Team Principal and Ralliart General Manager, Paul Brigden said:
“We have achieved what we came here to do and I am delighted. The car performed so well – without any significant pre-race testing – for all 24 hours. It’s a credit to the whole team: the engineers, drivers and pit crew.”
Lead Driver James Kaye was also pleased with the outcome:
“It’s a tremendous achievement that we’ve completed one of the toughest races in the UK calendar without any major problems. There’s great potential in the Lancer Evolution X and I’m looking forward to being able to do some test and development work which will make it even more competitive.”
The three other drivers were also complimentary about the car:
“It’s great to drive and is very well built, with excellent delivery of power and forgiving handling”, said Andy Barnes.
Mark Lemmer commented:
“It’s an easy car to drive and, with a little more development, there is at least two-seconds a lap to be gained. It’s a great package.”
Jay Wheals, who was drafted in just a few days before the race said:
“I was able to get used to the car very quickly. It felt good from the word go and I had no problem adapting to four-wheel-drive.”
The team is now considering future events before the end of the year, details of which will be announced in the next few weeks.