At the second round of the Blancpain Endurance Series in Silverstone the team Rinaldi Racing maintained it’s ground with a strong performance. After the tremendous overall victory at the Monza round of the Series, the team this time crossed the finish line on seventh position. In the high competitive field the team’s drivers Marco Seefried, Rinat Salikhov and Norbert Siedler on the 5.9 kilometres long traditional Grand Prix Circuit prevailed against numerous opponents.
Rinaldi Racing celebrated already a brilliant start into the event. With a strong second rank in the timed session the team from the German village Mendig qualified for the first row in the starting grid and had another ace in the hole. “We have made everything right”, reported Marco Seefried. “The car was perfectly prepared. We waited with the new tyres until the end and could even save a completely fresh set of rubber for the race.”
With a good start Marco Seefried was able to keep pace with the top and drove a forceful first stint with the Ferrari. After a full course yellow the 39-year-old could close up to the top and with a encouraged manoeuvre he took over the lead. “After the full course yellow in the initial third of the race I began to push even harder”, Seefried explained. “At the pit-stop and driver change I could hand over the car to Rinat in the leading position.” The Russian Salikhov proved in the following laps his strength and kept the contact to the top-10 with good lap times. Finally he handed over the by far best Ferrari in the field to Norbert Siedler. In the final third of the race the Austrian convinced with a chase to the top and after 84 laps saw the chequered flag on seventh position. “The pit-stop strategy was the deciding matter today”, described Norbert Siedler. “Marco had a brilliant first stint, however, of all things our Ferrari colleagues cost me time when I tried to lap them. With that the Bentley as well as the McLaren were able to pass me. Finally, despite the new ‘BoP’ we had a good pace and we are satisfied.”
“Mission accomplished”, team manger Michele Rinaldi appeared glad after the race. “Our aim was a top-10 finish and we fulfilled this task. We knew that it would be a difficult matter with the changed ‘Balance of Performance’. Nevertheless, we have made the best of the situation and all three drivers performed truly well today. Rinat convinced with a superb drive, constancy is his strength. Also the sister car was performing well again. Steve Parrow delivered a strong drive as well.”
TV station Eurosport for all fans of sports car racing comes up with a one hours summary of the highlights of the Silverstone race on Tuesday, (May 26th), at 11.30 pm. The team of Michele Rinaldi has only two weeks time until the next race is scheduled. The Blancpain Sprint Series travels to the Belgium race track Zolder from June, 5th to 7th, where the third round of the year will take place. Team manager Rinaldi appears battle-some: “We did quite good so far and in Zolder we will attack again.”