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Jun 15, 2014 - 02:25 PM
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2014 Le Mans 24: The Alpine A450b In Pursuit Of The Podium At Le Mans
Posted by: newsla on Jun 15, 2014 - 02:23 PM
Le Mans News
2014 Le Mans 24: The Alpine A450b In Pursuit Of The Podium At Le Mans


The Alpine A450b survived the night at Le Mans without encountering so much as the slightest issue, and Paul-Loup Chatin, Oliver Webb and Nelson Panciatici were able to benefit from the excellent track conditions to post pace-setting lap times in the LMP2 class.

 

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That was, at least, until the car’s front-left upright broke with Chatin at the wheel during the 19th hour – forcing the Alpine A450b into its pit box for rapid repairs.

Losing 12 minutes, the Signatech-Alpine crew surrendered second position in the LMP2 class standings and fell to fifth.

After returning to the track, Paul-Loup wasted little time in reclaiming fourth place, three laps adrift of the class leader.

Philippe Sinault, Signatech-Alpine Team Principal: “At the end of his stint, Nelson reported some play in the steering – but it transpired that the problem was rather more serious than that. The team performed a first-class repair job in a short period of time, but the delay nonetheless cost us three places. That said, there are still five hours of racing to go and we must keep pushing!”

Paul-Loup Chatin: “I was really happy with the car during my night-time stint and I was able to establish an excellent rhythm – even if I had to take a few risks in the traffic so as to maintain the pressure on the leader. There is still a long way to go.”

Oliver Webb: “My stint in the car went very well. Racing at night at Le Mans is an incredible experience. I tried to be as consistent as possible whilst following the team’s instructions. You need to remain ultra-alert through the traffic at all times.”

Nelson Panciatici: “I had a good rhythm going. Physically, I had no problems and was able to keep up the pace, even during a stint of more than three hours. I tried to push hard and I set the same lap times as I had done in qualifying. The car felt extremely well-balanced, but then I began to feel vibrations over my last two laps.”

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