RLR MSport is looking to break its run of misfortune and achieve truly representative results with both its LMP2 and LMP3 line-ups in the 2019 European Le Mans Series 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (20-22 September).
It led an ELMS race outright for the first time with its ORECA 07 LMP2 when conditions were at their most changeable and was on course for what would have surely been its strongest result of the year, only to be taken out of the running when contact resulted in terminal gearbox damage.
The Silverstone performance is a demonstration of the strides taken since RLR MSport’s return to LMP2 competition at the start of the season, and the view is that the team will be capable of bouncing back and fighting at the sharp end once again at Spa with Bruno Senna, Arjun Maini and John Farano.
“It would be great if we were able to replicate our Silverstone performance, although Spa is a very different and more challenging circuit that tests everybody, but especially the Bronze drivers,” said Maini. “It all looked so good at Silverstone, as the conditions at the start of the race worked in our favour and John (Farano) performed really well, and I hope we can do the same this weekend.
“I’ve always had raw pace at Spa and it’s a track I love – if a driver says they don’t like Spa, there’s something very wrong with them – because it has a bit of everything, from big braking zones to corners like Eau Rouge that require a lot of bravery, as well as technical combinations where you have to be precise. I’d be fairly happy if we could get into the top six this weekend and we’re pushing hard in testing to ensure we’re fully prepared for every eventuality.”
RLR MSport’s LMP3 crew was once again struck by misfortune last time out at Silverstone, but still recovered a top ten finish.
Denmark’s Christian Olsen and Martin Vedel and British racer Martin Rich threatened the podium in the previous two rounds at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya and Silverstone, only to be taken out of contention by careless rivals or minor mechanical troubles.
While frustrating, the team proved that it has all the right components to challenge for the podium with a change in fortunes during the final two rounds of the 2019 ELMS, starting at Belgium’s historic and evocative Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps.
“I quite like Spa, as it’s a confidence track that’s very challenging,” said Olsen. “It’s a place you want to do well at because it’s so iconic and has a lot of heritage, but also because it’s a gesture of your capabilities as a driver.
“I’m going into this weekend wanting to achieve a result. We need stability, consistency and a good working platform, which we have already started to put in place, but I will be going into the race with a focus on my own personal performance, showing what I can do and hoping everything else comes together. I’ll be over the moon if we realise our full potential as a team.”