Roelofs Engineering entered Le Mans Classic with the Ferrari 250 GTO and Daytona of Piet. The 275GTB4 of Jan Gijzen and the Ferrari 250LM of A. van der Lof. The event consists of a night Free practice, a day Qualifying and 3 50 minute races.
Plateau 4 of the 250GTO and the 250LM is the starting point of the event and after a good practice run and a promising qualifying we started P7 and P17 with the cars. The first race was great, after the Le Mans style start, both cars were very reliable. The GTO at one point was on the P5, but a very rare mistake of Nicky made the car drop back to P10 after a nice 360 spin. I think Nicky was inspired by Max Verstappen who did the same thing during the F1 qualifying. The LM came in at P16, turned out it was missing its stabi….. So our team went on to make a replacement using some leftover parts. While the first race of the Daytona and the GTB started!
The Daytona was really in its element, liking the long straights. We of course put in the longer ratio, so we didn’t have any problems on the track with the car. Even finishing on P6!!! Which was crazy considering we were surrounded by Lola’s and Chevron B19’s.
Sadly tragedy struck...
The race was crazy hot and Nicky switched on the fan on its way back to the paddock, after finishing. The fan broke, it was completely smashed, nearly all the blades broken. The bits of fan went through the radiator of the car. For hours the guys tried to get it fixed, even giving it maximum time to dry by towing the car to the re-fuel. But sadly there was nothing we could do, the car had to be retired.
After that it was just us focusing on the rest of the cars. Working through the night to get some set-up changes done on the LM and getting a Elektra problem fixed. Race 2 of Plateau 4 gave the better results of the weekend, P5 with the GTO and P11 with the LM. Race 3 was another P5 with the GTO, the LM dropped back a bit. The pick-up problem returned so Yelmer made an extra stop, P15 was the end result.
The nice thing with Le Mans for the cars that aren’t protypes is that it isn’t the end of the world in the final result. Because you can still win something called the Performance Index. A very complicated way of calculating who did best considering the limitations of the car. After the even we found out that for the GTO it was a P2 on the performance index of plateau 4!
The GTB with Jan did an amazing job, finishing the event! Even after we had to do some Macgyver fixing of his broken clutch lever. After 3 races and a lot of hard work as a GT in a prototype dominant plateau the car was P16 on the performance index.