SBR's Internationals impress
Alex Davison (right) chats to Marc Lieb at Wednesday's test at Queensland Raceway.
Stone Brothers Racing’s (SBR) international drivers for this weekend’s Gold Coast 600 have brushed off their jetlag and settled in straight away for their first ‘test’ of SBR’s V8 Supercars at Queensland Raceway today.
Helio Castroneves (Brazil), Marc Lieb (Germany) and Emanuele Pirro (Italy) enjoyed plenty of seat time today in their new rides, each clocking up over 80 laps in preparation for this weekend’s two 300km races – which was a remarkable feat in itself, considering Castoneves and Pirro only landed in the country at 6.45am this morning.
Quickest of the three SBR internationals today was IndyCar star Helio Castroneves, who will be partnering Tim Slade in the #47 Lucky 7 Racing Falcon. With the advantage of having driven with Slade during last year’s event, Castroneves took to the track like a seasoned-veteran with lap times to match.
Multiple Le Mans winner Emanuele Pirro also found his comfort-zone early, quickly adapting to the foreign V8 Supercar. Pirro will team-up with Shane van Gisbergen in the #9 SP Tools Racing Falcon for this weekend’s races.
Porsche factory-pilot Marc Lieb made the most of today’s test, pumping out almost 100 laps in the #4 IRWIN Racing Falcon. Lieb will join long-time friend and former Porsche compatriot Alex Davison when the lights go out on Saturday.
SBR’s regular drivers, Shane van Gisbergen, Alex Davison and Tim Slade will return to the track with their international counterparts on Friday morning for opening practice at the Surfers Paradise street circuit.
Helio Castroneves – Co-Driver, Lucky 7 Racing car #47
“Today was awesome. It’s always good to come back to a team and guys you know and whose expertise you value. I have been following the Team all year and Tim and I have unfinished business here on the Gold Coast after last year so we’ll be doing our best to wrap it up on the weekend. I really have to thank everyone at Lucky 7 and SBR for this opportunity.”
Emanuele Pirro – Co-Driver, SP Tools Racing car #9
“I’m really, really happy to be here. I have been out of a race car for a while now and I have come back very comfortably. To drive the V8 Supercar is very similar to the descriptions my friends who have driven them told me about so it was a good experience. Today was about retuning my instinct in the car and adapting my style to suit. The Team has been a fantastic help to get me through this learning process today and for that I very thankful.”
Marc Lieb, Co-Driver, IRWIN Racing car #4
“These cars are very different to what I am used to but they are actually what I expected. Things were difficult at the start of the day but as we progressed I got a lot more comfortable and my lap times improved accordingly. I’m really looking forward to racing this weekend on the streets of the Gold Coast.”
2013 Championship Calendar
2013 Championship Points