31/07/2016 – The much awaited Total 24 Hours of Spa, fourth round of the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup, confirmed I.S.R. racing’s quality, as the Czech outfit brought both cars to the chequered flag, securing a top ten finish in the Pro final standing and the podium in Pro-Am Cup.
The two Audi R8 LMS run by the Prague based team showed a very consistent race pace and, thanks to a wise and flawless strategy, managed to score an important result that rewards the efforts of the whole team in its second complete season in Blancpain GT Series.
The number 75 car driven by Filip Salaquarda (CZ), Marlon Stockinger (PHL) and Edoardo Mortara (CH) took the fourteenth raw of the grid in qualifying with a best lap of 2’20.355, while the number 74 challenger led by Franck Perera (FRA), Nicolas Lapierre (FRA), Henry Hassid (CH) and Philippe Giauque (FRA) defended I.S.R. racing’s colors in Super Pole posting the eighth quickest time in 2’18.547, that was also the second quickest of Pro-Am Cup.
The race started on cloudy weather but on dry track. Salaquarda, Stockinger and Mortara started getting positions back despite being slowed down by a drive through penalty in the initial stages. A crescendo of performance allowed them to gain the fifth absolute position at halfway through, but a contact overnight – luckily without serious consequences, slowed down their comeback race. A sudden weather change in the final five hours caught out several rivals, but Salaquarda, Stockinger and Mortara showed constancy and determination closing within the top ten in P9.
I.S.R. racing’s result was rounded off by the great race run by the n.74 Audi R8 LMS that has always been among the front runners keeping a good pace during the night and also when rain shuffled the cards on track. The strategy devised by the team allowed the drivers not to lose contact with the rivals. Perera, Lapierre, Hassid and Giauque ended the race with the podium of Pro-Am Cup, a result that kept them well within the fight for the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup Pro-Am Drivers and for the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup Pro-Am Teams.
Igor Salaquarda (I.S.R. racing, Team Principal):
“It is always very exciting to run the Total 24 Hours of Spa. We played all our cards in this round following the experience acquired last year, and we secured a pleasing result. I am very happy for the performance of drivers and for the determination shown by th whole team. We built this result lap after lap, especially during the night we did not give up even when some episodes could have spoiled our end result. The satisfaction of making it to the absolute top ten with Filip, Marlon and Edoardo and the podium of Pro-Am scored by Franck, Nicolas, Henry and Philippe is the best feeling we bring home from Spa”.
The Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup will resume after the summer break next 16 – 18 September at Nürburgring.